It’s finally summer, and I for one can’t resist enjoying more of the longer, warmer days with meals in the great outdoors. Instead of welcoming friends in from the cold, I relish ushering them outside for lingering dinners on the deck. Is it just me, or does everything taste better when eaten outside? Whether it's a camp site, your cottage, the beach or your own backyard, dining outside offers the perfect opportunity to entertain outdoors enhanced by mother nature.
Alfreso meals are the kind you can prepare in the cooling breezes of a summer morning and serve care free for supper that night without heating up the kitchen. In true Virtual Supper style we have whipped up a menu that delights all of your senses. Lets see what we have cooked up for you with this months theme. From informal after work gatherings to elegant, fine china brunches, this menu will provide you with some key tips and recipe ideas to help make your alfresco suppers a major success.
Jerry of Jerry's Thoughts, Musings and Rants starts our alfresco dinner off with a Grilled Pizza with Prosciutto, Arugula, and Lemon. The dough develops a yeastier, more complex flavor from a 24-hour resting period in the refrigerator. You can also use store-bought dough and make the process even easier.
Mary Ann of Meet Me in the Kitchen wowed us with a Summer Lemon-Vegetable Risotto. Asparagus, zucchini, yellow squash and sugar snap peas all combine together for this heavenly dish.
Jamie of Mom's Cooking Club brings along a refreshing Summer Peach and Tomato Salad for a well rounded meal.
I brought along an entree of Poached Salmon with Creamy Herb Sauce. Poach the salmon in the cool breezes of early morning, perhaps not that early, whip up the sauce and dinner will on the table in minutes when the time comes.
Roz of La Bella Vita 's Chocolate-Amaretti Peaches from the pages of Cooking Light are a fitting end to our alfresco dining. Shaved bittersweet chocolate and amaretti cookies from your local specialty or gourmet markets and you have a winner!
Sandi of The Whistlestop Cafe accompanied dessert with Peach Ice Cream. Cooling and refreshing, a perfect ending.
If you would care to join in either link your light alfresco recipes or add your link to the Linky tool below.
**Poached Salmon with Creamy Herb Sauce**
- 2 cups dry white wine
- 2 cups water
- 3 tablespoons sliced shallots
- 6 black peppercorns
- 4 lemon slices
- 2 parsley sprigs
- 4 (6-ounce) skinless salmon fillets (about 1 inch thick)
- 1/2 cup low-fat mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh sorrel
- 1/4 cup fat-free sour cream
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chervil
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh dill
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3 cups sugar snap peas, trimmed
- 8 cups torn Bibb lettuce (about 5 ounces)
1. To prepare salmon, combine the first 6 ingredients in a large skillet; bring to a boil. Add fish to pan. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes (fish may not be completely cooked). Remove from heat. Let stand, covered, 10 minutes. Remove fish from pan with a slotted spoon; place on a dish. Cover and chill. Discard cooking liquid.
2. To prepare sauce, combine mayonnaise and next 9 ingredients (through pepper) in a small bowl; cover and chill.
3. Cook peas in boiling water 1 minute or until crisp-tender. Drain and rinse with cold water; drain. Arrange 2 cups of lettuce and 3/4 cup peas on each of 4 plates. Top each serving with 1 salmon fillet and about 3 tablespoons sauce.
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