Dinnertime this Summertime

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Written by Lauren Delaney

Looking for some suggestions for enjoying some light and delicious dinners this summer? Join author Lauren Delaney as she shares “Dinnertime this Summertime.

Written by Lauren Delaney

imageThis is one of the easiest times of the year to eat healthy and there are numerous ways to take advantage of all the opportunities available. Here are my top 10 suggestions for enjoying some light and delicious dinner fare that is good for you.

  • Visit a farmer’s market — This is a great way to save money and ensure you are getting the freshest in local produce. Enjoy seasonal favorites like strawberries and corn, but also branch out and try some new veggies too.
  • Beef up your salad — A cold dinner is appealing when the temperatures soar so make your salad the is main feature. By using fresh ingredients and adding some nuts or cheese for flavor this can be a filling dinnertime option.
  • Grill it up — Always popular and a great way to avoid heating up your kitchen. Marinate chicken breasts overnight with a dressing of your choice and slice up some veggies to put on a skewer. A simple and easy dinner.
  • Serve it cold — Soup isn’t just for the winter! Try making your own gazpacho as a light appetizer by chopping a variety of vegetables (a food processor is good too) but make sure it is chopped and not pureed. Add tomato juice, olive oil and vinegar and stir well. Chill the soup for at least 6 hours before serving.
  • Get creative with fruit — Fruit is wonderful, but also can go bad very quickly. Enjoy adding berries or other fruit to water for a refreshing drink. Much better for you than a soda!
  •  Go classic — There is no reason not to enjoy your craving for a burger this time of year, but plan your choices. Select very lean ground beef and don’t go too crazy with your toppings. Deli Thins are a great alternative to rolls or you could go “bun-less” and enjoy it wrapped in greens or on a salad. Veggie or turkey burgers are great choices as well.
  • Enjoy a picnic — Taking your dinnertime meal outside makes it special because it’s different. Keep it simple with sandwiches, salads and fruit and find somewhere scenic to dine at a park, beach or camp ground.
  • Get green with appetizers — Rather than sticking with traditional crackers and cheese when you have a few friends over try some different fare such as cucumber, red pepper and celery slices with hummus or a light dip.
  • Breakfast for dinner — Always an easy option. Try whole wheat pancakes with Greek yogurt and some fruit to give it a tropical feel or enjoy a vegetable omelet with onion, mushrooms and zucchini.
  • Fries on the side — So tasty, but not always so good for you. Make your own fries in the oven by slicing and adding some seasoning and a little bit of oil. This is a great side with many dinnertime choices.

There you have it — a few ways to lighten up your meal choices and utilize the great options that are available in the summer months. Enjoy!

Identity Magazine is all about empowering women to get all A’s in the game of life — Accept. Appreciate. Achieve.TM Every contributor and expert answer the Identity 5 questions in keeping with our theme. As a team, we hope to inspire and motivate ourselves and inspire you to get all A’s.

What have you accepted in your life that took time, physically or mentally?
Patience – and I am still working on it!

What do you appreciate about yourself and within your life?
Accepting that not being perfect is ok.

What is one of your most rewarding achievements in life? What goals do you still have?
A successful career in marketing. I would love to own my own company eventually.

What is your not-so-perfect way? What imperfections and quirks create your Identity?
I tend to be obsessive and a perfectionist, but I’ve learned to let things unfold a little more as I’m getting older.

How would you complete the phrase “I Love My…?”
I love my determination and resourcefulness. It’s come to my rescue many times!

About the author

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Lauren Delaney

Lauren has a bachelor's degree in English Literature from Fairleigh Dickinson University and is currently employed at Century 21 Real Estate as a Marketing Manager. Lauren "discovered" working out about two years ago after she was injured in a car accident. After seeking medical care, she was told she would never feel better until she started exercising and strengthening her body. Not exactly the athletic type,
Lauren started with some baby steps, and found she truly enjoyed getting stronger and "feeling the burn" as they mention in those gym commercials. A love of exercise led to better eating, lots of learning about nutrition, and the rest as they say is history. Hardly! It has only been two years and there is still a lot out there to absorb. So much so that Lauren started a blog to share her thoughts and adventures. The Bikini Experiment is dedicated to the journey of enjoying the fit life...because, yes, it can be fun. In her spare time, Lauren enjoys movies, shopping, celebrity gossip, reading and traveling.

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