Snack Time: Inspiring Summer Harvest

By Kim Jeffery

I always feel inspired following the summer refresh. Inspired to plan better, shop better and ultimately cook better for my family. As I flew through my local grocery store after work the other day, I was instantly slowed down by the colourful displays of seasonal fruits and vegetables. My cart quickly became filled with everything from new red potatoes to an amazing flat of peaches.

As my family rapidly consumed the delicious peaches with their fuzzy skins, I am happy they are a good source of dietary fibre and are rich in minerals such as calcium, potassium, magnesium, iron, manganese, phosphorous, zinc, and copper. We are now on to flat number 2! One of my family’s favourite summertime desserts is grilled peaches or nectarines, served with a dollop of vanilla yogurt, ice milk or ice cream. They are delicious! If you are looking for some inspiration with this recipe, check out this website for ideas:

I should admit, I am not a huge potato fan, but there is something about new red potatoes I love. While the skin on a red potato provides most of the fiber, about 3g in a medium red potato, it is the inside of a red potato that is jam packed with Vitamin C, about 30% of our daily recommended allowance. This nutrient is vital to our overall health, helping to repair body tissue and providing antioxidants. I prepared the new potatoes classically, steaming them until tender and tossing with chopped fresh dill and a small amount of butter. Next time I think I will try a cold potato salad tossed with fresh tomato and basil or lemon and thyme.

Red Potato Salad with Sundried Tomatoes & Basil (serves 6)

  • 750 g small red potatoes, unpeeled and halved

  • 2 Tbsp (30 mL) mayonnaise

  • 2 tsp (10 mL) Dijon mustard

  • ¼ cup (60 ml) buttermilk

  • 2 green onions (or fresh chives from your garden), thinly sliced

  • ¼ cup (25 g) chopped sun-dried tomatoes (not oil packed)

  • ½ cup fresh cherry tomatoes, quartered

  • 8 basil leaves, shredded or finely chopped

  • ¼ - ½ teaspoon salt (optional)

  • black pepper (season as desired)

Cook the potatoes, in a large pot of lightly salted boiling water until tender.  Approximately 10 to 15 minutes. Drain well and cool. For the dressing, combine mayonnaise and mustard in a small bowl. Stir in the buttermilk. Adding some lemon zest to the dressing would be a nice flavour enhancer as well. In a large bowl, combine potato, onion, sun-dried tomato, fresh tomato and basil. Add the dressing and toss seasoning with salt and pepper. This would be great served over a bed of mixed dark greens!

There are so many ways to incorporate more vegetables and fruits into your day and at this time of the year it's easy to be inspired with creativity. From kale pizza crust to pesto made from carrot greens, my internet searches for delicious ways to enjoy them never cease to surprise me. They are just not the same old veggies they used to be!

Kim Jeffery has been a Registered Dietitian for 25 years and is a member of the College of Dietitians of Alberta. For the past 7 years Kim has used her expertise to help ensure the meals produced at Calgary Meals on Wheels are nutritious and healthy for our clients.