I love salsas of all kinds. Traditional red salsa, corn salsas, fruit salsas – it would be hard to nail down just one favorite. Last week we had fish tacos, and I went to the store for a few last minute ingredients. The cashier alerted me to the fact that the fresh, local cantaloupes were on sale for $2 BOGO. How could I resist? A true buy one get one too, not that BOGOHO crap!ย  I’d planned to do my usual mango salsa, but remembered when Shawnda had made a cantaloupe salsa to pair with fish tacos, and thought that would be a fun twist instead.

I pretty much just took my recipe for pico de gallo, and subbed in cantaloupe for tomato. It was fresh and delicious, and perfect with the blackened fish. And of course it wonderful for munching on with tortilla chips too. I know this would be a hit at any potluck or BBQ, as it’s so unique and different. Taking advantage of the last of the summer’s bounty while I still can, I know I’ll be making this a few more times before all the good melons are gone!

I know, I know – I just shared a recipe for homemade french fries on Friday, but I couldn’t resist sharing this rendition with you guys. My first taste of this wonderful fry flavor fry at Gordon Biersch, a national brewery/restaurant chain. I was blown away by their sheer awesomeness, and immediately went home and tried to re-create them. Several attempts were made, but none of them turned out quite right.

I’d been using olive oil to create the garlic-parsley infusion, which just seemed to make them extra greasy. The next time I tried butter instead. Once I swapped that out, bingo! Right on the money. These fries are drop dead delicious, ya’ll. A pungent bite from the garlic, a hint of lemony-herby goodness from the parsley. Certainly a great side dish, but these stand alone as an appetizer as well. With football season only a few weeks away (can I get an Amen?), I’m going to be looking for fun new munchies to make for my guys during the game. These fries definitely fit the bill!

Macaroni salad was always one of those things I bought pre-packaged at the deli (blech, I know!). The concept seemed simple enough; pasta, veggies, mayonnaise based sauce. But, somehow it always went horribly wrong – managing to be a clumpy gloopy mess, but also still dry. I had given up hope, until I came across a recipe from a source I can always trust.

In Hawaii, where macaroni salad is a staple when it comes to plate lunches, it’s been a long known secret that you intentionally overcook the pasta – to make it “fat”. It helps it to really soak up the sauce, and keep the pasta moist and delicious. It makes a large batch that is perfect to take to a cookout. Or, for a simple dinner at home with some grilled barbequed chicken. Leftovers were great too! With a little grilled tuna or chicken, and some diced fresh pineapple tossed it – made for an awesome lunch.

As a girl who used to turn her nose up at Mexican food, I’m a million miles away from where I started. One of my very favorite things to order at a Mexican restaurant is chile rellenos. A pepper that’s been stuffed with potato and cheese, then fried? Sign me up. Now that summer is upon us, and in another month or so I’ll be picking a basket full of poblano peppers every couple of days, I figured it was only prudent to buckle down and come up with my ideal relleno recipe.

A big misconception is that chile rellenos are super spicy. Not the case, so don’t let the word “chile” scare you off. We don’t mind a little heat, but if you’d like them even milder – just remove all of the seeds from inside the pepper before filling. I fried this batch to keep it authentic, but often I skip the batter entirely and just stick the stuffed peppers under the broiler for a few minutes. Shaves some time and calories, which is always a good thing! When paired with some Spanish rice, these make a delicious and satisfying summer meal. Enjoy!