Anna never confuses simple with ordinary. A distinctive first course of Avocado Mousse and Shrimp on Tortilla Chips comes together in a flash. Chilled Tomato and Cucumber Soup with Seasoned Croutons makes a light and refreshing midday meal, and Spicy Corn Fritters with Salmon Caviar Dip are just the thing to set out for your weekend guests when a sunny Saturday on the beach turns into breezy evening on the deck.
Many dishes can go straight from the grill to the table, like Grilled Tenderloin of Beef with Fresh Herb Sauce or Perfect Whole Grilled Chicken with Plum Chutney. In the mood for seafood? Halibut Baked with Olives, Lemons, and Fresh Basil is a snap to prepare and full of fresh flavors. And what would summer be without salads? Serve Black Mission Figs with Goat Cheese and Upland Cress to begin a dinner party, while the Magret of Duck and Wild Rice Salad or the Asian-Flavor Beef, Pepper, and Spinach Salad are meals in themselves.
If your favorite part of the meal is dessert (like Anna!) you won't be disappointed. Chocolate Chunk Orange Cake is a sweet ending to any meal (or even a sweet breakfast) and is just as satisfying with a cup of midafternoon coffee. Rhubarb Blueberry Pie or a Peach Tart with Almond Topping and a Cookie Crust take advantage of the best of summer fruits. The Coconut Lemon Layer Cake is a showstopper, or you can opt for a simple dish of dead-ripe berries lavished with a dollop of Crème Fraîche.
Put summer on your plate and enjoy everything the season has to offer.