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The 4 Fool Proof Recipes You Need This Summer Featured

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Through the eyes of Julia....

With the summer social season upon us, we are sure to find ourselves wondering what we should bring to the neighbourhood party, the office BBQ, or family potluck dinner. Below are the four easy recipes that will solve any culinary need you may have this summer.

 1. An Easy Appetizer:

 7-Layer Dip

 Difficulty: *

 Prep Time: 15 mins

 This Mexican inspired dip is always the first appetizer to go at picnics and parties. You can customize the layers if you wish, but the secret to success is serving the dip in a shallow dish to ensure each layer is thin for dippers to experience all the flavours in every bite.

 Starting from the bottom in half inch layers:

Refried beans

1-2 diced tomatoes

Sour cream


Guacamole (make ahead tip: add the guac as the top layer the day of serving to prevent browning)

Grated cheese

Optional Layers: black olives, diced red onion, and jalapeño peppers (for the truly brave!)

 Tortilla chips for dipping

2. One-Loaf-Does-All:

Zucchini Loaf With Streusel Topping

Difficulty: **

Prep Time: 15 mins

Cook Time: 60-70 mins

This sweet and savory loaf amazes me with its ease of preparation and flawless results every time. The sour cream in the recipe is a healthier option than butter or lard adding moisture and density, while the cinnamon-brown sugar streusel topping makes a second piece irresistible.

2 cups flour
1 cup wholewheat flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
3 eggs
1 cup oil
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups grated zucchini
1/2 cup sour cream

Optional: 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips


1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tablespoons melted butter

  • Mix dry ingredients and wet ingredients separately before combining

  • Divide mixture between 2 greased loaf pans

  • Combine the topping ingredients and sprinkle over each loaf

  • Bake at 350 for 60-70 min


3. A Light and Healthy Meal:

 Zucchini Noodles With Creamy Avocado & Cucumber Sauce

 Difficulty: *

 Prep Time: 15

 Cook Time: 5

This light and refreshing recipe is perfect as a side dish, or main course. Making zucchini noodles requires a spiralizer or a steady hand to slice the zucchini into long thin strips.

 2 zucchinis

2 tbs cooking oil

 5 cherry tomatoes

 ¾ avocado

 1 tbs pesto

 ¼ large cucumber

 1 tbs milk

 1 tbs olive oil

  • In a large sauce pan at medium heat, combine noodles, cooking oil and ½ cup of water

  • Cover and let simmer until tender (4-5 mins)

  • Slice the cherry tomatoes and set aside

  • Combine all other ingredients, blending until smooth

  • Top noodles with the sauce and tomatoes

4. Dessert!

Blueberry Pie with Sour Cream and Brown Sugar (adapted from Canadian Living)

 Difficulty: ***

 Prep Time: 35 mins

 Total Time: 2 hours 35 mins

This twist on a crowd pleasing classic will have people raving about your cooking skills. This pie is consistently sweet due to its unique streusel topping, and brown sugar and sour cream filling. Creating a delicious pie requires you take the time to chill the dough. Refrigeration allows the gluten in the flour to relax, which creates the perfect light and flaky crust.


1 cup sour cream

1 egg

2/3 cup brown sugar

2 tbsp all-purpose flour

 1 tsp grated lemon zest

 1 tsp vanilla

 Pinch salt

 3 cups fresh blueberries


 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour

 1 tbsp granulated sugar

 1/4 tsp salt

 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cubed

 1/4 cup ice water


 1/2 cup all-purpose flour

 1/2 cup packed brown sugar

 1/4 tsp cinnamon

 1/3 cup cold unsalted butter, cubed

  • Whisk together dry pastry ingredients, cut in butter using pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse crumbs

  • Drizzle in just enough ice water, tossing with a fork, to form ragged dough

  • Wrap in plastic and refrigerate 1-2 hours.

  • Soften pastry at room temperature (5 mins) after chilling. Roll out dough to fit your pie plate. Chill in pie plate (30 mins)

  • In bowl, whisk together filling ingredients, stirring in blueberries last. Scrape into pie shell. Bake at 425 (15 minutes)

  • Mix streusel topping together using fingers, sprinkle evenly over pie.

  • Bake at 350, covering crust with foil if browning too quickly (40 mins)


These four recipes have been tested to perfection and are a great addition to any party. Bon appetit!


Read 171287 times Last modified on Wednesday, 17 June 2015 23:01
Monday, 15 June 2015 09:43


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