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National Eat Your Veggies Day

Jul 18 2012

by Whitney Long

Southern Cuisine Post by Whitney Long.

CELEBRATIONS – National Eat Your Veggies Day

Summer is here and that means it’s vegetable time! In fact, June 17 is “National Eat Your Vegetables Day”. But here in the South, it’s something we celebrate every day.

Home of the “vegetable plate”, Southerners can enjoy the bounty of our crops year round and especially this time of year. With tomatoes, squash, okra, butter beans, peas, corn, peppers, onions and much more growing abundantly, we are a blessed bunch to be able to go out and pick, pull and gather the makings for a fine and healthy meal.

Is there anything better on a summer day than a fresh picked, juicy tomato on white bread with mayo and a generous sprinkle of salt and pepper? Sometimes, if I am feeling fancy, I top it with feta cheese. I could eat one every day once the hot weather arrives. Or what about a mess of field peas – picked, shelled and cooked by your own two hands? And don’t forget to top the peas off with a spoonful of tomato relish – a match made in Heaven.

As for the above mentioned veggie plate – usually consisting 3 or 4 vegetables served with a slice cornbread and a glass of tea – is there a better comfort food to the southern palate? If there is one on the menu, that’s what I always order and if not, I have been known to create my own from the list of sides.

Whether it’s a cinderblock building that’s been there forever with the chalkboard menu featuring staples such as creamed corn, cabbage, butter beans, stewed tomatoes and okra, or a “New South” restaurant with choices like Snap Beans with Turnip Mostarda and Chile Flakes (www.huskrestaurant.com), Summer Salad (www.thenational.com), Caramelized Whole Roasted Cauliflower (www.runchickenrun.com) or Early Corn Soup (www.fiveandten.com), eating your vegetables is a good thing and has never been more interesting!

We have some delicious recipes to share highlighting some of summer’s bounty:

Fire-n-Ice Summer Salad http://www.deepsouthdish.com/2009/06/fire-ice-summer-salad.html

Squash and Tomato Bakehttp://www.midwestliving.com/food/fruits-veggies/vegetable-recipes/#page=4

Snap Bean and Corn Saladhttp://www.delish.com/recipefinder/snap-bean-corn-salad-recipe-rbk0610

Corn, Tomato and Cheddar Piehttp://www.clockworklemon.com/2011/09/corn-tomato-and-cheddar-pie.html

Summer Squash and Carrot Ribbonshttp://www.delish.com/entertaining-ideas/parties/picnics/fresh-vegetable-side-dishes-toplist

Three Ways to Butter Up Summer Corn http://www.midwestliving.com/food/fruits-veggies/vegetable-recipes/#page=9

For an unbelievably easy and ingenious way to cook corn on the cob see this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YnBF6bv4Oe4

All of these recipes can also be found on The Southern C’s Pinterest board “Cocktails and Cuisine” http://pinterest.com/thesouthernc/cocktails-and-cuisine/

by Whitney Long

Enjoy this southern recipe in this collection of our southern cuisine – let’s gather the best southern food ideas for The Southern Coterie cookbook.

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Whitney Long View More Blog Posts from this Author

Whitney Long is co-founder of The Southern C and The Southern C Summit. Mama x 4, wife x 1. Entrepreneur, thinker, doer, writer, researcher, believer. Enjoys working alongside creative entrepreneurs to build community while supporting established and upcoming brands. Hobbies include travel, reading, bike rides and clever craft cocktails.

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