Finally Friday!

Jun 7 2013

by Melissa Lee

You know the song, “Summertime”. Well, it has arrived here on St. Simons Island and I am making the living easy. I love outdoor entertaining and today I’m sharing one of my favorite meals, easy, delicious and sure to impress your guests!


Baratta Cheese with Heirloom Tomato Jam


Fresh Organic Arugula Salad

Crusty French Bread with Olive Oil

Ice Cream Sundaes

Sangiovese Wine



These are so delicious and easy! In a pitcher combine 1 1/2 cups white rum; 1/2 bottle mojito mix; 1 1/2 cups blueberry/blackberry juice….fill to the rim with club soda, stir ad serve over ice with mint sprigs. Refreshing and delicious!


Baratta Cheese with Heirloom Tomato “Jam”

I got the idea for this recipe from a fabulous blogsite: sock monkey, and am sharing the bloggers picture. I expanded upon it a bit, it was delicious served with slices of french bread I toasted.

1 ball Baratta Cheese, at room temperature

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 small basket mini heirloom tomatoes, cut in half

1 clove garlic, finely minced

1 pinch of organic raw sugar

1/4 cup dry white wine

2 tablespoons capers, well drained

1/4 cup fresh basil, julienned

While the cheese reaches room temperature, begin making the tomato “jam”. Place the tomato halves in the olive oil and simmer over low heat. Add the garlic and sugar and continue to simmer until the tomatoes are breaking down. Add the white wine and capers to the pan and continue cooking until most of the liquid is absorbed. You’ll have a thick mixture that is so yummy. If you like, you may season with a good sea salt and cracked black pepper.

Pour the tomato “jam” over the cheese and sprinkle with the fresh basil. Place toast points around the platter and serve with the mojitos.



2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into 1 inch cubes

2 small andouille sausages, about six inches each, cut into 1/2 inch slices

1 pound fresh shrimp, peeled, leaving the tail on

1 bag littleneck clams

1 bag “Spanish” rice, with seasoning (this is a shortcut that you can pass on and use regular rice with a good pinch of saffron)

2 – 3 cups vegetable or chicken broth

1 large yellow onion, finely diced

3 cloves garlic, peeled and finely minced

1 can halved artichoke hearts, drained

1 can chopped tomatoes (16 oz.) drained

1/2 cup chopped, flat leaf parsley

Fresh orange slices for garnish, if desired.

In a large skillet, that has a fitted top, heat the olive oil. brown the chicken and the sausage, drain and set aside. Place the chopped onion in the pan and saute for five minutes. Add the garlic and return the chicken and sausage to the pan. Add the canned, drained artichoke hearts, tomatoes, rice and broth to the pan. Cover and simmer on low heat for one half hour. Remove the cover and add the shrimp and clams, pressing them down into the rice mixture. Cover and simmer for twenty minutes. If all of the liquid has not absorbed, bring the heat up a bit and simmer uncovered for five minutes. Sprinkle with the chopped parsley and orange slices and place the pan in the middle of the dining table for serving. Casual and so yummy!

arugula salad

Fresh Organic Arugula Salad

I love the peppery sharpness of fresh arugula. This is so simple, just toss the arugula with a mixture of 2 tablespoons good olive oil, 1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar, a bit of dry mustard, sea salt and pepper. A bit of parmesan cheese, shaved and sprinkled over the top adds a tasty zing to the salad.


Crusty French Bread with Olive Oil

Not a necessity, but always good on the side for those who indulge in bread from time to time!

Ice Cream Sundaes

Another indulgence! I usually opt for Ben & Jerry’s because, what can I say, it’s the best! We love a scoop of “Late Night Snack” with a scoop of “Heath Bar Crunch”, drizzled with a bit of caramel sauce and a sprinkle of hot red pepper flakes…..delicious!

Here’s a link to what’s happening on the area musically this weekend from Kathi Williams:

It’s the end of another busy week, I hope you’ll take the time to stop, relax and renew! This post is in memory of Robert Bostock, an icon in the St. Simons Island community who left us on Wednesday after a battle with cancer.. A fabulous guy with two of my favorite restaurants here. Never forgotten, never.


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