Labor Day has come and gone. School supplies sales came and went. The kiddies are back in school. The beaches here are much less crowded now. The slow or fast-paced summer that you might have had has come to an unofficial end. I had my first Pumpkin Spice Latte of the season the other night. My summer is finally coming to a finale, too, with school starting next Thursday. I've already ordered my textbooks and just have to get my student ID picture taken. Sadly, the photo machine has been broken since last week. Luckily, I found this out over the phone and not after a long trek up to L.A.
Although I mention all of these events that signal the end of summer, there is one thing that is constantly reminds us that it is officially still summer: the weather. This summer that we have had has been abnormally hot. Now, fellow Southern Californians, I think you can agree with me and that I'm not just being a whiny, spoiled brat who prefers her cooler So Cal summers. I mean, the humidity that we've had this summer! Can you say ridonkulous? I have not had a break since the beginning of August. What am I talking about?
Well, I was in Arizona during that week they had 117-degree weather. Dry and hot. Yuck. The pool water did nothing to help cool you off, nor did the "cold" water coming out of the bathroom sink! Then, I came back home for a week to humid and warm weather. What is going on here? Then, off I jetted to Miami and Fort Lauderdale. Miami was extremely hot and humid and I remember walking around Miami Beach at 11:48pm one evening and just literally dripping. Fort Lauderdale was not as bad since we were there when Tropical Storm/Hurrican Isaac was there. Swimming in the Atlantic Ocean during a tropical storm was kind of fun and also kind of stupid as the waves were majorly choppy, huge, and about to drown me. Suffice it to say, I didn't stay in the water too long. I experienced squalls. I didn't know what one was until explained to by a local. I finally came home and while the weather was welcomed after Florida, I've begun pouting about it again.
Aside from making a few things, my baking has taken a dive because it's just too warm to turn on the oven. But, I have made some pretty scrumptious eats which I will share in another post. Don't you worry! ***Soooo sorry about the weather rant. If you've gotten this far and not left yet, I thank you.***
With this summer weather still looming, the other night I made this lovely vegetarian salad that was cool and refreshing. It had all the right elements: tangy, juicy, crunchy, soft, creamy, and herbaceous. Once all the chopping is done, you simply mix everything together and it is ready to eat. It's a light salad but filling, too, if eaten on its own due to the garbanzo beans. And if you've never tried raw red bell pepper, you don't know what you're missing! It's so sweet and incredibly crunchy. Just awesome. This salad would also be fantastic as an accompaniment to a fish or chicken dish.
I hope you're all doing well and I promise to write more frequently. I'm starting to get the writing bug again and have lots of goodies to share with you :-)
End of Summer Vegetable Salad
- 6 Persian cucumbers, peeled and sliced on a diagonal
- 1 cup baby heirloom tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup diced jicama
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- lots of freshly ground black pepper
1. Combine the cucumbers, tomatoes, parsley, red bell pepper, garbanzo beans, and jicama together in a large bowl. Sprinkle the salt and black pepper on top. Add the lemon juice and olive oil.
2. Gently mix up the salad, trying not to squish the tomatoes.
3. Refrigerate for about 20 minutes before serving.