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In the Kitchen

Spring and Summer Inspired Recipes for Entertaining with Ease

Spring is here and summer is just around the corner. With these seasons comes a bounty of fresh produce and opportunities to entertain. From fresh strawberries to golden corn, what better time of year to whip up a few easy dishes for the family or a gathering of friends. We’ve shared a few of our favorite recipes using seasonal produce items. Enjoy!


Classic Cheesecake

16 graham crackers, crushed

2 tbsp. butter, melted

4 - 8 ounce packages cream cheese

1 ½ c. white sugar

¾ c. cup almond milk

4 eggs

1 c. sour cream

1 tbsp. vanilla extract

¼ c. all-purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch springform pan.

In a medium bowl, mix graham cracker crumbs with melted butter. Press the mixture into the bottom of the springform pan.

In a large bowl, mix cream cheese with sugar until smooth. 

Blend in almond milk and then mix in eggs one at a time.

Mix in sour cream, vanilla and flour until smooth. 

Pour filling onto the prepared crust.

Bake in a preheated oven for 1 hour. 

Turn the oven off, and let the cake cool in the oven with the door closed for 5 to 6 hours to prevent cracking. 

Chill in the refrigerator until serving. 

Top with fresh strawberries when serving, if desired. 


Chickpea Salad

3 c. chickpeas, cooked and drained

2 c. grape tomatoes, halved

2 medium cucumbers, seeded and chopped

1 c. sweet peppers, chopped

1 red onion, chopped

1 c. feta cheese, crumbled

½ c. olive oil

¼ c. balsamic vinegar

¼ c. lemon juice

a few sprigs of fresh Italian parsley, chopped

1 tbsp. chopped garlic

½ tsp. dried oregano

½ tsp. salt

¼ tsp. black pepper

Whisk together dressing ingredients (olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, and spices)

Combine chickpeas and vegetable in a large bowl.

Add the dressing to the salad bowl and stir to combine.

Chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes before serving to allow flavors to meld. 

Mix in feta just before serving.


Elote Corn Salad

6 ears of corn, husked

⅓ c. crema

4 tbsp. fresh lime juice

½ tsp. ground cumin

¾ tsp. smoked paprika

½ tsp. chili powder

¼ tsp. black pepper

¼ tsp. salt

½ c. crumbled cotija cheese

½ red onion, minced

⅓ bunch cilantro, chopped

Holding the corn by the small end, cut off the kernels.

Place the kernels in a big bowl and add all remaining ingredients.

Mix gently with a rubber spatula, seasoning with additional salt as needed.

Serve slightly warm, room temperature or cold.


Summer Sangria

2 c. sliced fruit of choice (oranges, grapefruit, apples, pears, strawberries, peaches)

3 tbsp. sugar

1 c. brandy

2 bottles red wine

½ c. orange juice

½ c. lemon lime soda

Place fruit, sugar, and brandy into a 2 to 4 quart pitcher and stir to combine.  

Let the mixture set in the refrigerator for 6-8 hours minimum.

When ready to serve, add wine, orange juice, and lemon-lime soda. 

Stir to combine and pour over ice.


Sour Cream Pound Cake

2 sticks butter

3 c. sugar

3 c. plain flour

¼ tsp. baking soda

6 eggs

1 c. sour cream

1 tsp. vanilla

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Place flour, sugar, butter, sour cream, and vanilla in a mixing bowl.

Mix on low and add eggs one at a time.

Once mixture is complete, pour into a greased bundt pan.

Bake for 30 minutes.

Reduce heat to 300 degrees and bake for 45 minutes or until done.