Tag Archives: fresh


The Dish: Pesto

Take advantage of the last moments of spring with delicious homemade pesto. Use basil from your own garden for the best tasting pesto you’ve ever had!

Find this recipe and more summery delights on Scottsdale Living: The Dish on Pinterest.

If you want to save your pesto and use it throughout the summer and even in to fall and winter, try freezing it. Ice cube trays are perfect for portioning out pesto to use year round. Simply make your pesto up to the point where you add cheese. Leave the cheese out (it doesn’t freeze or defrost well) and portion it out in to ice cube trays. Once frozen, you can pop the pesto cubes out and place them all in a zip top bag to go in to the freezer.

*To use after freezing simply defrost however many cubes you’re using, toss in some freshly grated Parmesan cheese and stir! You and your family will be enjoying fresh pesto year round!


4 cups fresh basil, rinsed
3 cloves garlic
1 lemon, juice and zest
1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
1 cup max extra virgin olive oil
1 cup max Parmesan, grated
salt and pepper to taste

Pack food-processor with basil. Pulse 3-4 times to break down leaves. Add garlic, lemon juice and zest, and pine nuts. Turn processor on and through the feed hole in top drizzle in olive oil until consistency is smooth. Pour in to bowl.

If freezing, at this point portion out pesto into ice cube trays using a tablespoon. Properly sealed pesto will be good up to 6 months in the freezer. Follow instructions above for what to do after freezing*

If using right away, stir in up to 1 cup of cheese, less if you’re freezing a portion. Add salt and pepper to taste. Let flavors meld for about 15-20 minutes on the counter.

Toss with fresh pasta or spoon on the grilled meant and vegetables for a fabulous summer dinner. Try spreading some on a sandwich instead of mustard or over your salad instead of dressing.


Pea Puree_outlined

The Dish: Spring Pea Puree

One of my favorite things to make each spring is pea puree. It’s so fresh and light; perfect for a spring day. In truth, you can make it any time of year, but I like to make it in the spring and summer when you need a great no-cook recipe. Don’t let preconceptions about the name turn you away. This recipe resembles hummus more than baby food!

You can use a variety of herbs, but I prefer flat leaf parsley and basil. A sprig of mint or tarragon also adds wonderful fresh flavor. I highly recommend using parsley as the majority herb, though. It is light in flavor and won’t over power the rest of the ingredients. Too much basil and you’re treading in pesto territory. Too much tarragon and it’ll taste like licorice.

This would be a great use for the lemon and herb oil you made over the holidays. Replace a tablespoon of the extra virgin olive oil with a flavored one for added depth.

Spring Pea Puree

1 bag defrosted frozen peas
1 handful flat leaf parsley (use curly if you can’t find flat)
2 sprigs of basil
1-2 sprigs mint or tarragon
juice and zest of 1 lemon
1 clove garlic (optional)
3-5 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Pour peas into a strainer and let sit until fully defrosted. Add peas, herbs, lemon juice and zest to a food processor. Pulse until chunky. Using a spatula, scrape down sides of processor. Replace the lid, remove cover from the top and slowly drizzle in olive oil while pulsing. Process until puree is smooth. Taste and add salt and pepper to your liking. Pulse again quickly to incorporate seasoning.

Scrape mixture in to a container and press plastic wrap on top. Puree tastes best when it has had a few hours to let the flavors meld together.

Serve on crusty toasted bread, spread on a sandwich, dip veggies in it or toss in warm pasta for a light and fresh sauce.

Pea Puree_outlined

orange beet salad cropped

The Dish: Fresh Orange and Beet Salad

My ultimate go to salad for any occasion is this orange and beet salad. I found it in a cookbook on New Orleans cuisine years ago and I make it every chance I get. It’s great for serving a crowd or makes a light lunch during the week. This salad is perfect for the winter months when citrus and root vegetables are in abundance but canned beets and oranges can be substituted. Most importantly, it’s diet friendly without skimping on the flavor.

The Bibb lettuce is fresh and light, the spiced pecans add a great crunch and the creaminess of the farmer’s cheese works great with the sweet beets and tangy oranges. Certainly any one of the components to this salad can be substituted but I highly recommend trying it in its entirety with all the different flavors and textures working together in perfect harmony.

Farmer’s cheese is hard to come by but it is simple to make your own. However, if you’d rather not bother blending cheeses, crumbled goat cheese will be just fine.

Included with this recipe is my specialty vinaigrette. It’s perfect on any salad or spooned over grilled veggies and meat.

Fresh Orange and Beet Salad with Pecans and Farmer’s Cheese

4 small beets (whole canned beets can be substituted)

2 heads butter or bibb lettuce

8 clementine oranges (if using canned drain and rinse well)

1/2 cup chopped toasted spiced pecans (recipe follows)


For the Farmer’s Cheese

1/2 cup cottage cheese

1/2 cup cream cheese

1/2 cup goat cheese

salt and pepper to taste


For Deborah’s Specialty Vinaigrette

2 tablespoons local wild honey

4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

zest of 1 lemon

salt and pepper to taste

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil


Preheat oven to 450F. Scrub and trim unpeeled beets, wrap in foil and roast until easily pierced with the tip of a knife, about 1 hour. Remove from oven, unwrap, and when cool enough to handle, peel the beets, trimming off any remaining root and cut into 1/4 inch slices. Set aside to cool completely.

While beets are roasting, make the vinaigrette. Whisk together honey, lemon juice, zest, salt and pepper. Slowly drizzle in oil until it emulsifies. Taste and adjust seasoning.

To make the farmer’s cheese, in a food processor, combine the cheeses and blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Cut and slice off the top and bottom of each orange. Stand each orange upright on cutting board. Following the curve of the orange, slice off the peep and pith without removing too much of the flesh. Cut each section free from the membrane into a bowl.

Divide the lettuce on individual plates or spread on one large platter. Arrange the beet slices and orange segments. Dollop the farmer’s cheese and sprinkle the pecans on top. Whisk the vinaigrette and drizzle it over the salad.


Sweet and Spicy Pecans

1/2 cup pecan halves

1 tablespoon butter or margarine, melted

2 tablespoons sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/8 teaspoon smoked paprika


Preheat oven to 325F. Toss all ingredients together in a small bowl until evenly coasted. Spread in a single layer on a lined baking sheet. Bake until lightly toasted, about 10 minutes.



Summer cosmetics

Essential Summer Cosmetics To Protect Your Skin

Summer is approaching, and the sun is beating down: Essential summer cosmetics to protect your skin

A woman’s biggest challenge during the summer? Getting an even tan and protecting her skin. Although tanning oil is found virtually everywhere, a good skin cream with SPF included is a little trickier to find.

Here is a list of summer cosmetics that offer the best facial skin protection while allowing you to absorb the Scottsdale sun this summer:


Summer cosmeticsKate Somerville, SPF 55 Serum Sunscreen

Oil-free UV protection that includes all but white residue, greasiness and stickiness. Used daily for all skin types.

Price: $45.00 (2 oz. bottle)
Where to buy: nordstrom.com

Sugar Rosé Tinted Lip Treatment by Fresh

For lips that need refreshing, this rose-tinted lip cream is meant for moisturizing and hydrating dry lips with SPF 15.

Price: $22.50 (.15 oz. bottle)
Where to buy: barneys.com

summer cosmeticsSun Shield Sun & Sport Leave-in Conditioner by Ouidad

Meant to create an incredible good-hair day, this conditioner has UV filters and protects hair from damage caused by sun, wind, salt and chlorine.

Price: $20.00 (8.5 oz. bottle)
Where to buy: ouidad.com

summer cosmeticsYoghurt Cooling Gel by Korres

If you’ve already been exposed to the sun, this cooling gel soothes and provides long-lasting freshness to the face and body. Perfect for the skin if its been stung by the blaring sun.

Price: $23.50
Where to buy: ulta.com

summer cosmeticsOil-free Daily Hydration SPF 15 by Boscia

For a basic cream that doesn’t grease up the skin, Boscia’s Hydration moisturizer minimizes pores and provides sun protection. Boscia is essential for a daily, outside workout or simply running errands with potential sun exposure.

Price: $36.00
Where to buy: ulta.com

summer cosmeticsBIENFAIT UV SPF 50+, Super Fluid Facial Sunscreen by Lancôme

Safe for all skin types, this unique formula retains SPF after 40 minutes of water activity. Bienfait is also useful to prevent premature skin aging.

Price: $35.00 (1.7 oz. bottle)
Where to buy: lancome-usa.com

summer cosmeticsPrep + Prime Face Protect, SPF 50 by MAC

Suitable for all skin types, MAC primer can be applied under makeup to prevent sun damage. MAC allows the best of both worlds at the beach — protected and dolled up.

Price: $30.00 (1 oz. bottle)
Where to buy: maccosmetics.com


Did we leave anything off the list?
Tell us your must-have summer cosmetics this season!