4th of July Lunch

Happy Independence Day!


It is good to see ya! Are you hungry? I am. It has been a while since I posted my last recipe. It is time for another. I have been away from the computer for about a month house/pet-sitting for a few friends. Now I am trying to catch up in the garden. The weeds are three feet high! It is not easy to weed when it is 100 degrees. I’ve experience quite a few 4 am and 5 am hours weeding with naps half way through the day. Then I go back out in the evening. You gotta do what you gotta do when you are trying to grow your own food. As for the lunch and dinner meals we eat during a heat wave…well they are usually variations of cold salads. They are quick and easy so we can get back outside and enjoy the day.


I decided to deviate a little from the traditional 4th of July picnic fair. Fish sounded good today. I am not a huge fan of seafood but there are a select few that will make an appearance on my plate. In the past, I would eat it fried and smothered in tartar sauce to cover up the fishiness. Not today. I played around with a ginger peach glaze that goes on grilled chicken. I thought why not try this on Tilapia. My mom cringed at the thought of peach and fish together. Why not? People put mango salsa on fish tacos. Typical me, I made it anyway. You never know unless you try it.


Most recipes put lemon on fish but that to me intensifies the stinky sea flavor and I will avoid it after one bite. But if the lemon is in a side dish with the fish then it is welcome. Am I the only one this picky when it comes to fish?


We had macaroni salad the night before and I wanted something along the same line. I started to make a salad to go with the fish and realized that I had a bag of rice thawed out. Here is final result.


Update: I apologize but my recipe widget died and I lost almost all of the recipes I posted. 🙁 Not happy about that but that’s technology for ya! Here is the recipe of below.


Spinach and Basmati Salad

 6 servings as a side dish


Spinach and Basmati Salad2 cups cooked basmati rice, cooled

1 cup baby spinach

½ cup feta cheese

¼ cup onion, chopped

1 roma tomato, chopped

1 cup black olives, drained

Juice and zest 1 lemon

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

¼ cup basil, chopped

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon white pepper



  1. When you cook rice make extra and freeze small portions (like 1 or 2 cups) in Ziploc bags for a later date. Write down how many cups and the date. I do this all the time and it saves time.
  2. Drain the olives, then slice them in the can or jar to speed things up. It is a little easier than trying to chop them on the cutting board. And it keeps you from munching on too many.
  3. This side dish goes great with fish. I had it with ginger peach tilapia (recipe coming soon).
  4. Use pasta or quinoa in place of rice.



Cook the rice according to package directions. Let it cool while preparing the rest of the ingredients.

Rinse the spinach, if needed.

Crumble the feta and chop the onion, tomato and olives. Set aside in a medium or large bowl. Add the rice and spinach and gentle mix together.

In a small bowl, zest and juice the lemon. Add olive oil, garlic, basil and salt and pepper. Whisk the dressing, pour over the salad and toss. Enjoy it cold on a hot day. Feel free to warm it up too if you like.


*Another variation is to saute the onion and garlic in the olive oil and to prepare the rest as stated above. This sweetens the onions and garlic and is easier to digest for those that are sensitive to raw onion and garlic. At least it helps a friend of mine that is sensitive to these in raw form.



Stay safe this 4th.

Thank you for reading.


vanilla no chemicals


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