Last summer we gave you our Vacation Packing List of “essential” kitchen items to bring. This year we thought we’d help you plan your vacation meals. Nothing too fancy and nothing too ambitious, these are a few of our favorites for simple cooking on your days away. Plus, a quick list of prep-ahead essentials you might consider toting with you too.
Fresh Herb Sauce — Chop 1 bunch flat leaf parsley, 1 bunch basil, 1 handful mint, 2 cloves garlic, 1/3 c. capers, 4 oz. salted anchovies (optional). Place in bowl and add 2 Tbls. red wine vinegar, 5 Tbls. good olive oil, 1 Tbls. Dijon mustard, salt and fresh pepper. Serve with any grilled fish.
Eggplant with Feta, Mint & Chili — Slice and brush eggplant with olive oil, grill until golden and tender. Crumble feta in a bowl and add red chili pepper, mint and lemon juice to taste. Mix. Pile on top of eggplant and serve with toasted pita and salad for a light lunch or as a side to grilled meat.
Grilled Spinach with Beef Tenderloin — Heat grill until very hot. Rub beef with olive oil and salt and pepper, grill briefly. Let stand. Brush 3 fresh whole bunches of spinach (washed and dried) with olive oil. Turn down heat to medium and grill until slightly wilted, continuing to brush with olive oil as spinach cooks. Add salt and pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice. Serve slices of beef on top of grilled spinach. Add a side caprese salad of fresh tomato, mozzarella and basil.
Grilled Peaches with Honey — Cut peaches in half, remove pits and grill until slightly charred. Drizzle with honey.
Ginger Beer Shandy — For a refreshing afternoon drink, pour really cold lager into a tall, ice-filled glass, top with ginger beer, and serve with lime.
PREP-AHEAD ESSENTIALS — Make a big jar of basic vinaigrette to bring with you, assemble the dry ingredients for a delicious pancake mix, and pack dried spices or herbs in small ziploc snack bags so you only have to pack what is needed.