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Simple Summer Entertaining

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by Rebecca Lilly Costa from xxrlilly

Summer entertaining is in full swing at Casa de Costa! I’m talkin’ grilling, watermelons, refreshing mocktails… we are in party mode over here. I’m excited to be partnering with Village Farms to share two easy summer entertaining recipes featuring their lovely tomatoes. They offer quite the selection of tomatoes at my local grocer, but today I’m using their Maverick Mix® and Sinfully Sweet Campari® in these easy summer party favorites.

Tomato Melon Skewers

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The first is a no-cook skewer recipe highlighting summer melons, Maverick Mix® tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, basil, prosciutto and balsamic. If your party guests are more creative, you could even leave your ingredients as a DIY bar for them! I opted to create my skewers before my guest’s arrival to keep things simple. Each juicy refreshing bite is more flavorful than the last! Plus, they’re an easy grab-and-go item for munching while you mingle at a summer party or for sandy hands enjoying a beach day.

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Now on to the mocktails! These tomato watermelon coolers can be made with vodka too, but I opted for sparkling water. A great trick I’ve learned for mocktails (or cocktails!) is using a mason jar as a makeshift shaker. Add all of your ingredients and cover. Shake it up, add ice and use a hand held strainer or mason jar lid with holes to strain. I love a signature drink for any party and this one has been a hit all summer! It’s refreshing, hydrating and delicious.

Campari Watermelon Coolers

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Another reason I love combining these recipes for the perfect summer party? They use the same ingredients! I like to keep my grocery list as simple as possible, so I love how diverse my menu can be even with just a few key ingredients, it even creates a theme to keep in mind!

If you’re short on honey, feel free to substitute with agave or maple syrup! Keep extra limes and tomatoes around for garnishing and feel free to offer jars of these for your guests to adorn their own drinks.

Recipes and blog were created exclusively for Village Farms by Rebecca Lilly Costa from xxrlilly

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Fun Spring Dishes for the Family

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by Lunches + Littles

It feels like we were just in our kitchen prepping recipes for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Yet, blooms are popping up all around us outside, and somehow Easter is right around the corner. I don’t know how it happens, but time flies, doesn’t it? And, as a family who often does a lot of hosting around the holidays, we know that time in the kitchen goes by way too fast as well- making delicious, easy recipes is a must.

That’s why today we are sharing two simple, fun, and kid-friendly recipes that we’ve created exclusively in partnership with Village Farms- and they are perfect for your Easter get-togethers. First up is a hearty, yet healthy breakfast: our Hash Brown Egg Nests w/ Blistered Tomatoes. These nests are so fun for little and big hands alike, and the individualized presentation just feels really special on your plate too.

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We have been making these little nests – in various forms, for a couple years now and they are always a hit with everyone. And making them with the addition of Village Farms’ Maverick Mix® tomatoes is a perfect way to add pops of color and tons of flavor too. Aren’t these tomatoes beautiful?

To make these Hash Brown Egg Nests w/ Blistered Tomatoes we start with seasoned shredded potatoes (you can shred your own, but a great, time-saving hack for this recipe is to buy a bag of pre-shredded tomatoes from your local grocery store), cheese and crumbled maple sausage and form that mixture into nests using a muffin tin. Once those bake and start to crisp up, we prepare fluffy scrambled eggs to add to the nests and then top them with a mix of blistered tomatoes, that resemble colorful little eggs.

The Maverick Mix® Tomatoes from Village Farms are so perfect for this dish because each pack contains 4 to 6 different flavorful varieties; each with a distinct shape and flavor, and the colors are stunning – red, orange, yellow, green, and brown- a true rainbow of color. These nests are tasty, pretty to look at, and easy to make, even for a busy Easter breakfast or brunch. And there is such a fun sophistication to these nests – beautiful to look at, but also so kid-friendly.

Hash Brown and Roasted Tomato Easter Egg Nests

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Next up, we have a centerpiece that is part work of art – part simple appetizer/side dish. Our Stuffed Tomato Tulips are a perfect centerpiece for your Easter table – and such a fun way to get your little ones involved in the kitchen doing more than just dying eggs, or eating chocolate! These little tulips are, in our experience, a show-stopping conversation piece – and delicious too!

Stuffed Tomato Tulips

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This recipe is not only simple; it is a great one to get your little ones to help out in the kitchen with. They can help mix up the filling, cut the chives or stems, and with help (dependent on their age) even stuff the tomato tulips!

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These tomatoes aren’t just the perfect shape and size for a fun centerpiece like this; they also have an incredibly sweet flavor and are rich in vitamin A and vitamin K. We don’t know what will wow your family and guests more – the taste of these authentic mini San Marzano tomatoes or this fun flower creation you can make with them.

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We are always looking for fresh new ways to bring people around our table and serve delicious, real food. We hope that you will give one- or both of these fresh recipes a try. They are both such fun recipes highlighting one of our favorite brands; Village Farms.

 

Recipes and blog were created exclusively for Village Farms by  Lunches + Littles

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One Pan Perfection

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by Lunches + Littles

For as far back as I can remember, I have been interested in creating colorful, delicious food. When I was a little younger I had a bit more time to play around with intricate recipes, but today my life looks a little different. When it comes to meal times these days, there are two things that are important to me: 1. Ensuring that what I am cooking is healthy for my family and 2. Ensuring that time to the table is kept to a minimum.

I want all of my children (3 babes, 4 years old and younger) to see me in our playroom playing with them, not constantly in the kitchen, and as such, developing recipes that are quick and easy, but also healthy and colorful is the key.

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When I was introduced to Village Farms last year I was immediately intrigued – all of their tomatoes are greenhouse grown and are just bursting with flavor. One variety we have fallen for is Village Farms’ Cherry No. 9 Fall in Love Again® tomatoes. They are good on almost anything and sweet enough to be a satisfying snack even for the littlest family members. Loaded with vitamin C, beta-carotene, and riboflavin, these sweet little tomatoes are a healthy choice and natural immune booster (which is perfect for a home full of little ones).

One Pan Roasted Cherry No.9 Fall in Love Again® Tomatoes, Chicken & Potatoes with Lemon Salad Recipe

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Recently I developed a recipe specifically for Village Farms’ Cherry No. 9 Fall in Love Again® tomatoes. This easy sheet pan meal; Roasted Tomatoes, Chicken and Potatoes w/ Lemon Salad is perfect for any family or couple, and also perfect year-round. The seasoned chicken breast tenderloins get all tender and juicy and then quartered potatoes and full tomatoes get roasted until perfected; then tossed with greens in a lemony homemade dressing, topped with lemon zest. The whole dish comes together in just 45 minutes, and the tomatoes give it that beautiful pop of color my family and I love.

Just last week, I made this dish that is now a staple in our home, again and had my best friend over for the meal. Not knowing that I had even developed this recipe with Village Farms, she said: “these tomatoes taste even better than the ones my parents have grown in their yard.” And, I’d agree. If you are looking for a delicious recipe that comes together easily and quickly check out this recipe, and if you are looking for a tomato variety that is kid-friendly and perfect for so many recipes as well as salads, snacks, etc. be sure to look for Village Farms Cherry No. 9 Fall in Love Again® tomatoes in a store near you. You will not be disappointed!

Created exclusively for Village Farms by Lunches + Littles