My Gotta Tries: What Should Be On Our Menu

Happy 4th of July!  Hope you’re relaxing and beating the heat!

I don’t have a menu plan this week.  What?  I know, how odd.  But I’m headed to London to train for the Olympics.  Yes, I’ll be in the 2012 Summer Olympics.  And One Moment in Time better be blasting when I win the gold for my uneven bars routine.

I’m not headed to the Olympics.  But that’d be a great excuse for not accomplishing a lot of things lately (blogging, deep cleaning the house, organizing the garage, etc.).  Instead, I sat on my buns and watched too much of the Olympic trials.  I kind of feel more athletic and lean just from watching all that sportiness.

My future Olympian.

Since I’m not sharing a menu this week, here’s a plethora (I just wanted to say pleeeeh-thor-aaaaa: name that movie!) of recipes I plan to make this summer.  These caught my hungry eye and I’ll test them out all summer long.

I’ll eat and watch the Olympics.  Totally a sport.


Strawberry Oatmeal Smoothie from Fudge Banana Swirl

Source: Fudge Banana Swirl 

I’ve made a lot of smoothies in my time and even some with oatmeal, but this one from Fudge Banana Swirl just sounds extra yummy.  I’m really falling hard for almond milk–wait, but only Blue Diamond Unsweetened Vanilla.  And with those deep red, juicy strawberries from the stands (so much better than the grocery berries), I think my family will be loving this smoothie on a warm summer morn.

Chocolate Zucchini Muffins by Sweet Pea’s Kitchen

Source: Sweet Pea’s Kitchen 

Zucchini and chocolate sound like such an odd pairing, but you’ve got to give it a try.  I love a moist chocolate zucchini bread so I’m going to give these muffins a shot.  I hear Sweet Pea’s version is a real treat so why not indulge one summer morning?  I mean, they’ve got a veggie in them–how can that be bad for ya?

Lunch & Dinner

Spinach Salad with Chicken, Avocado, & Pinenuts from Recipe Girl

Source: Recipe Girl

Doesn’t this salad looks yummy?  It’s really simple, but sometimes the simplest meals are the ones I forget to make.  I love a giant salad as my entrée, but I need it to fill my hungry belly up!  This might do the trick.  I bet this would be a great lunch for Olympians.  I shall eat it in their honor.

Avocado and Grilled Corn Salad with Cilantro Vinaigrette from Authentic Suburban Gourmet

Source: Authentic Suburban Gourmet

Here’s another summery salad that had me at avocado.  And grilled corn.  And cilantro.  I’ve craved salads lately and the summer bounty of delicious vegetables makes tossing together a salad a piece of cake! (ooo, cake)

Lemon Pepper Garbanzo Salad from NancyCreative

Source: NancyCreative 

This little salad makes my day and I’ve not even made it yet.  This is from the lovely Nancy over at NancyCreative.  I have a list of her recipes I plan to cook up (the lemon zucchini loaf that has gone viral? Hers).  I think I’ll serve it over a bed of greens as Nancy suggests or scoop it up with fresh pita bread.

Chicken Tortilla Soup by The Pioneer Woman

Source: The Pioneer Woman 

So Ms. Ree is all over the place these days.  Sometimes when something is outrageously popular, I refuse to take part in the love.  I don’t know why.  I can’t explain my illogical reasoning.  But you’d think PW would fall into this category for me, only she doesn’t.  Maybe because I’ve followed her for a long time and not one of her recipes has failed me yet.  I’m guessing this soup won’t either.  Ole!  I’ve been looking for a stellar tortilla soup recipe and I’m hoping this is a keeper.

Cheesy Squash Casserole by Paula Deen

Source: Paula Deen

I love me some Paula Deen.  When I need a little comfort as I’m doing some household chores, I put on my go-to background tv: Pride and Prejudice (Colin or Matthew), Anne of Green Gables, Cranford, Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, anything Paula Deen.  If I’m looking for a new casserole dish to play around with, I always check with Paula first.  I’ll probably make a few tweaks to this squash casserole, but I’m already ready to mow my way through this.  Bring on the squash!

Herbed Chicken Tenders by Simply Recipes

Source: Simply Recipes

My little one loves when we have chicken tenders.  Heck, I love when we have chicken tenders.  I love foods you can dip.  Hmm, actually anyone I love, friends and family, they’re all dippers.  I digress.  Simply Recipes is a little pot of recipe gold and I’m looking for a new tender recipe to add to my repertoire of dipping foods.  I think this herbed version is going to get a thumbs up from my family.  🙂

Slow Cooker Shredded Beef Tacos by Gimme Some Oven!

Source: Gimme Some Oven! 

I had to add a slow cooker recipe to this list.  And this one for shredded beef tacos from Gimme Some Oven! looks delicious.  My husband saw it over my shoulder and said, “yes, do that.”  Alrighty then, I shall!

Snacks & Dessert

 Lemon Drizzle Cake by Lemon Salt

Source: Lemon Salt

This enticing lemon drizzle cake is from my buddy loverbean 😉 over at Lemon Salt.  Actually, the picture is of  mini drizzle cakes she saw in Notting Hill.  I mean…envy.  I love a lot of things, but I do TRULY love lemon.  And since loverbean mentioned adding lemon curd to the British classic?  Well, I guess that means I must make it.

Lemon Meringue Cupcakes by Miki’s Kitchen

Source: Miki’s Kitchen

A lemon lover can’t try only one lemon recipe–not when I have juicy Meyer lemons coming out of my ears (thanks Pam!).  I have had these cupcakes on my “to make” list for months and I’ve no clue why they’re not in my belly yet.  Sweet Miki bakes up delightful treats like these over at her blog Miki’s Kitchen.  I can’t wait to make and share these with friends and family.  I just know they’re going to be scrumptious.

Easy-Peasy Lemon Curd by She Loves Simple 

Source: She Loves Simple

Um, sensing a theme here.  How do I not make lemon curd that dear Cathy of She Loves Simple calls Easy-Peasy?  I make it.  I have to.  I bet Cathy would demand I make it since lemon is my bff and it sounds like lemon is also her bff.  I never even considered making homemade lemon curd until I saw this on her blog.  Thank the heavens that Cathy popped into my life 🙂

And there you have it.  40 million recipes I can’t wait to make this summer 🙂  I’m an eater, friends.  I eat for pleasure.  Survival?  meh.  Play-suuuuuuure.

I’ll let ya know how they work out for me.  In the meantime, what are some of your favorite summer recipes?  Tempt me!



  1. Jennifer C says:

    I had to stop reading because I was too hungry! Let me know when you make the choc zucchini muffins. I’ll be at the table.

  2. Those dishes look mouth-watering! I don’t often follow recipes. Rather I look at what I have and then decide what I’m going to do with it based on my knowledge of cooking/preparation. Then occasionally I look in a book for inspiration. And of course now I get ideas from looking at blogs such as yours, so thanks very much 🙂

    • You are quite welcome,Helen! I love getting inspiration from mags,books,blogs etc and then making them my own too 😉 I think i spend too much time thinking about food,ha! I can’t wait to try these out!

  3. By the way, both my daughter and I think the water in the pool looks very inviting!

  4. Thanks so much for including the Lemon Pepper Garbanzo Salad in your list of Gotta Tries! All the recipes look so good! I want to try out that PW Chicken Tortilla Soup sometime… 🙂

    • You’re welcome, but thank YOU for providing such yummy recipes! I’m thinking I’ll just be eating this right out of the bowl by the spoonful. 🙂 Happy 4th! I’ll let ya know how the soup goes!

  5. Thanks for including Easy Peasy Lemon Curd and She Loves Simple in this fabulous line-up! Glad to know another LLF (lemon lovin fanatic)! Once you make it this way you will swear by it and make it often! Now, I’m going crazy to get a spoon and dig into the jar I have in the fridge!

    • ha! LLF, I like it! Thank YOU for sharing your recipe–I’ve been thinking of it ever since I saw it. I’m a little afraid of how much of it I’ll make, eat, make, eat. 🙂 I can not wait! Thank you so much and Happy 4th!

  6. aww thanks so much for including the lemon meringue cupcakes! hope you had a wonderful fourth!

  7. Ooooooonnnne mooooment in tiiiiiimmme!!!! If I promis eto sing it to you, whilst you prepare these fine dishes, will you invite me & my brood up to sample?? Actually, I will leave the brood at home & bring cocktails instead 😉 XO’s….catching up on blog posts – woohoo!!

  8. Erin @ My Mommy World says:

    Omg, are we sisters separated at birth?? I love Anne of Green Gables and Paula Deen too! Met her (Paula, not Anne) at QVC…she brought me some ham during her show and then I ran into her shopping for shoes afterwards. She is such a sweet lady!

  9. Oooooh – these all look so yummy? Can I just come over to your house and be your taste tester? 🙂 Haha!

  10. chindeep3141 says:

    LOL! pleeeeh-thor-aaaaa….I believe the movie you’re referring to is Three Amigos! 🙂 ….and Anne of Green Gables? come ON! me and my 22 year old daughter have had an Anne marathon every year since she was 4 🙂 I think we’re kindred spirits. xo


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