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Summer Entertaining

Fresh Recipes for Backyard Grilling

Warm summer evenings are perfect for firing up the grill and enjoying the best of the season with friends and family. Lauren Lane of @Lauren_Lane_Culinarian is serving up some of her favorites. Try an easy and delicious salad with tomatoes, peaches, and burrata cheese and steak hot from the grill with a savory Chimichurri sauce. A pitcher of ice-cold vodka lemonade will refresh your guests, and a grilled corn salad adds the perfect touch.

Tomato, Peach, and Burrata Salad

Makes 6 servings


·       A few big pinches of Kosher salt

·       Freshly ground black pepper

·       1 teaspoon dried oregano or 2 teaspoons fresh oregano

·       1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

·       1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

·       2 large heirloom tomatoes or large plum tomatoes, or cherry tomatoes (about 2 1/2 pounds total)

·       Two peaches

·       8 ounces mozzarella pearls or small balls

·       4 ounces burrata cheese

·       1/4 cup torn fresh basil leaves, plus additional whole leaves for garnish

·       Thinly sliced salami (optional)


1.     Combine salt, pepper, oregano, balsamic vinegar, torn basil, and olive oil in a small bowl for dressing.

2.     Place the burrata cheese in the center of a platter. Slice tomatoes and peaches. Arrange tomatoes, peaches, and mozzarella around the cheese. Fold slices of salami and add if desired.

3.     Drizzle with dressing. Sprinkle with more salt and pepper to taste and garnish with whole basil.

Steak with Chimichurri Sauce

Makes 6 servings


·       1 cup fresh Italian parsley, packed

·       1/2 cup olive oil

·       1/3 cup red wine vinegar

·       1/4 cup fresh cilantro, packed (optional)

·       2 garlic cloves, peeled

·       3/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper

·       1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

·       1/2 teaspoon salt

·       1 ½-2 lbs flank steak


1.     In food processor, combine all ingredients (except steak) and puree until smooth. Transfer sauce to bowl.

2.     Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Sear steak for 6-8 minutes on each side until heavily browned on the outside and slightly pink in the center.

3.     Thinly slice steak across the grain. Top with sauce and serve.

Grilled Corn Salad

Makes 4 to 6 servings


·       2 ears corn, grilled and cut from cobs

·       1 small shallot, thinly sliced in rings

·       ¼ cup feta or goat cheese, crumbled

·       3 sprigs basil, stems removed and torn

·       ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

·       1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

·       Black pepper (to taste)

·       Sliced jalapeno (optional)


1.     Place corn kernels in a bowl. Add remaining ingredients and mix to combine.

2.     Taste and add additional salt, pepper, and vinegar as needed.

Pitcher Vodka Lemonade

Makes 6 servings


·       48 ounces homemade lemonade (or store-bought)

·       12 ounces vodka

·       Ice, for serving

·       1 lemon, sliced thinly

·       Fresh mint for garnish


1.     Make lemonade if desired. Pour homemade or store-bought lemonade into a pitcher.

2.     Add vodka and lemon slices.

3.     To serve, pour over ice and garnish with fresh mint.

Additional ideas to round out your meal:

·       Drizzle store-bought hummus with olive oil and fresh basil, crumbled feta, toasted pine nuts or capers and serve with warm pita.

·       Top slices of store-bought pound or angel food cake with fresh berries, whipped cream, and mint leaves.