Some Yummy Sunny Summer Treats

Cassi Misciagna, Feature Editor

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During summer’s approach, many people celebrate with friends and family for surviving another school or work season through parties and get togethers. However, unlike winters, the spring and summer is an excellent time for enjoying fresh produce and lighter meals. Here are some easy recipes for the summertime to serve at your next get together.

 

Medium-sized flatbread pizzas are an after-school snack that is sure to ease a mixture of cravings when it is difficult to find a single thing to snack on. In addition, with the mini pizza-bagel formula, these treats can be customized between friends to suit everyone’s unique taste.

  • Below are the basic ingredients along with the instructions on how to modify the recipe:
    • One to two slice of plain flatbread
    • One jar of plain marinara sauce
    • ⅛ a cup of mozzarella, asiago, or parmesan cheese either sliced or grated
    • Fresh basil leaves

If you want to add further ingredients to the pizza such as diced onions, sliced peppers, or sun dried tomatoes, you can add them in the same way as the basil. However, ingredients such as fresh tomatoes, I would strongly avoid due to their ability to leak liquid while cooking. Furthermore, be sure to cook any uncured meats prior to adding them to the pizza. However, unlike a normal pizza plentiful toppings could cause the crust to break, therefore it is better to make a second flatbread pizza before adding an excess of toppings.

  • Here are the basic instructions on how to replicate the basic recipe:
  1. Set the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit or 232.22 degrees Celsius.
  2. Line a baking pan with parchment paper or foil, then place one to two slices of flatbread on the tray.
  3. Take a small spoon and place about three spoonful of tomato sauce on the bread.
  4. Spread the sauce around the center of the bread leaving about two centimeters of bread uncovered with the back of the spoon.
  5. Next, add your cheese to the center of the bread. If its slices, evenly space them around the center of the bread to ensure that no slices touch. However, if it is grated, just coat the center of the bread with the cheese by sprinkling it over the tomato sauce in the center.
  6. Add the basil leaves on top of the other ingredients evenly spaced apart, so none of the leaves touch one another. Do not cut or tear up the leaves before doing this.
  7. Place the tray in the oven for 25 minutes and let it bake. However, if the basil has yet to wilt and turned dark leafy green and the cheese has not melted fully, keep it in the oven for another five minutes.   
  8. Finally, remove the pizzas carefully from the pan and serve.

 

Fries are a delicious treat commonly served in fast food establishments such as McDonalds, Burger King, and Five Guys, that are not always worth a drive just to eat. In addition, making fries can be a messy and even dangerous experience without prior knowledge of how to use a fryer or pot full of boiling oil to cook them. However, with oven-baked fries the risk of receiving any severe burns is cut down substantially.

  • Here are the basic ingredients you will need along with simple ways to modify the recipe:
    • 3 to 4 standard potatoes
    • ¼-tablespoon of salt  
    • ½-tablespoon of olive oil

If you want to modify this recipe, you can add a ¼-tablespoon of another dried seasoning such as paprika or rosemary to the chips before baking them. In addition, you can use sweet potatoes instead of plain ones for sweet potato fries that can easily be coated with ½-tablespoon cinnamon for a savory-sweet treat.   

  • Here are the instructions for the basic recipe along with any modifications:  
  1. Set the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit or 232.22 degrees Celsius.
  2. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper.
  3. Cut the potatoes in half then slice each half into wedges.
  4. Next, take a bowl and coat the potato slices with olive oil and.
  5. Place the slices on the baking sheet evenly spaced apart so no fries touch each other.
  6. Bake the fries for 30 minutes.
  7. Remove the pan from the oven and carefully scoop the fries onto a plate.

 

Iced tea is a cool and refreshing drink common to the spring and summer season that is easy to construct large quantities of at home. Although there are many varieties available at every supermarket, using unique teas from throughout your home you can make a variety of unique flavors suitable for any event. One of my sister’s favorite flavors is plum iced tea, however she does not like the typical store brands, so we sometimes make our own.

  • Here are the basic ingredients for plum iced tea specifically; however, this recipe can be used with other combinations for different varieties of iced tea:
    • Six bags of plum tea
    • Six cups of boiling water
    • A cup of sugar
    • Fresh mint leaves (optional)
  • Here are the instructions for creating iced tea at home:
  1. Using a kettle, boil six cups of water (you may have to do this in segments).
  2. Then, pour the water into a pitcher and drape the tea bags off its side.
  3. Let the tea soak for 15 minutes, then remove them.
  4. Add the sugar and stir the tea until it has dissolved.
  5. Finally, place the tea in the fridge overnight. By morning, it should be ready to serve.
  6. When serving, you can add a mint leaf as an additional garnish, which can make the drink even more flavorful.

 

Another staple of spring and summer would be lemonade. Creating this fruity drink can be a fun family activity as long as everyone has the patience to juice some lemons by hand.   

  • Below are the ingredients for homemade pink lemonade using a raspberry puree and ways to modify the recipe for with other fruits:
    • Two pounds of lemons
    • Six ounces of raspberries
    • One cup and two tablespoons of white sugar
    • Three cups of bottled or tap water

To modify this recipe, you can omit the raspberries entirely to create a plain lemonade, but you can also use other fruits such as blueberries and blackberries in place of raspberries to create other lemonade creations. For hard fruits such as apples, strawberries, and mango though, cutting them up before cooking them and using a blender to puree afterwards is necessary for this particular recipe.    

  • Here are the steps needed to create raspberry lemonade at home:
  1. Forcefully roll the lemons on a smooth surface to get as much juice out as possible. Then, cut them in half.
  2. Then, take the lemon halves and squeeze the juice out, either by hand or using a lemon juicer over a bowl.
  3. Strain the liquid through a mesh strainer or pick out any seeds with a spoon.
  4. Next, add the water and a cup of sugar to the lemon juice. Then, stir the mixture until the sugar has dissolved.
  5. Using a funnel, carefully pour the liquid into a closeable pitcher or cleaned juice containers.
  6. Place the mixture into the fridge.
  7. Next, get a small pot and place the raspberries along with a small amount of water in it.
  8. Let the raspberries simmer for about 10 minutes on medium heat or until they are soft enough to squish. Then, using a wooden spoon mash the raspberries into a paste.
  9. Add the remainder of the sugar to the puree.
  10. Mix the raspberry paste. Then, remove it from the stove.
  11. Using a mesh strainer, strain the seeds from the raspberry puree and place it into a bowl.
  12. Lastly, using a funnel add the puree to the plain lemonade and with the lid on forcefully shake the container to mix it.
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Some Yummy Sunny Summer Treats