Today was a perfect summer day. It was the stuff that dreams are made of. My Sweet P went to school this morning and gave me a big hug "bye" before heading off to play. I spent the morning with my husband. Sweet P actually took a nap in her big girl bed, which is HUGE for her. She's never been a napper. Granted, my husband took a nap with her, but it's a step in the right direction. At least she slept this time. And, boy, did she sleep!
I went outside and laid in the sun in her little pool, just the right size to keep me cool. I read a book. I finished my book. I went to the library and got a library card! I checked out more books. All the while, my family was napping, and I got some "me time." It was much needed, and I enjoyed every second.
I enjoyed some "me time" last week with a friend. We went to Whole Foods and Sprouts and At Home... I enjoyed adult conversation and grocery shopping without having to rush. At Whole Foods, I picked up a new seasoning to try: Chipotle Orange salt. It has a strong chipotle flavor with just a touch of orange. The chipotle has a good bit of heat, so be mindful of that when you use it. A little goes a long way.
I knew it would go well on pork chops, so I simply seasoned both sides of the chop and seared them on my grill pan to give them those pretty lines. I finished them off in the oven for 20 minutes at 375.
The zucchini I also did on the grill pan. I used a touch of the chipotle orange salt, some black pepper, and olive oil. The zucchini cooked quickly and turned out beautiful.
Keeping with my fruit theme, I decided to go with an apple chutney. Typically, apple chutney calls for green apples, but since I knew I was going to use the chipotle orange seasoning, I decided to go with red apples so their natural sweetness would combat some of that heat. I cubed the apples and combined the apple pieces with some olive oil, a tbs of apple cider vinegar, some of the chipotle orange salt, a tbs (ish) of honey, and just a splash of orange juice to bring out the citrus in the salt. I also added in some raisins. I cooked the apples over medium high heat until the liquid was gone and used them to top the pork chops. The sweet apples, spicy seasoning, and savory pork chops combined perfectly!
This just looks like summer to me. So many colors and fruits and veggies; the grill marks... all signs of summer in my book.
Of course, my Sweet P was closely monitoring my work... Silly, sweet girl.
Do you have a favorite summer recipe! Let me know in the comments!