Wonderfully uncomplicated.

Cooking in the Summer time begs for simplicity. The season when produce is in its prime and at its most abundant, when there’s a desperate need to use as little heat as possible (unless it comes from an outdoor grill), and when we desire to spend less time in kitchen and more time lounging in the shade (or by the water) carousing with family and friends.

The following recipes are the definition of simple. Minimal ingredients, minimal effort. This fare is fresh, light, and incredibly satisfying.

Spaghetti with Tomato Sauce
I found this recipe through notwithoutsalt, who got it from The Silver Spoon for Children: Favorite Italian Recipes.

1 14 ounce can of chopped tomatoes (San Marzano is a popular choice)
1 teaspoon light brown sugar (I, Caitlin, will often use honey here instead of sugar)
2 garlic cloves
14 ounces spaghetti
10 fresh basil leaves
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt to taste

In a medium sauce pan add the tomatoes and sugar. Smash the garlic, peel, and add to the tomatoes. Bring the pan to a gentle simmer, cover then cook on low for 40 minutes.  Cook the spaghetti in salted water until al dente – you want it to maintain a very soft bite.  Take the sauce off of the heat and tear the basil leaves into small pieces adding them to the sauce. Finish with olive oil.  Toss the cooked noodles with the tomato sauce and serve with a pretty piece of fresh basil. Serves 4.

Grilled Peaches
This recipe is from Ellie Krieger’s cookbook, So Easy.

4 ripe but firm peaches
2 teaspoons of canola oil

Preheat a grill or a nonstick grill pan over medium heat. Cut each peach in half and remove the pits. Brush the cut side of each peach half with oil. Place the peaches cut side down on the grill or grill pan and cook until the peaches soften slightly and grill marks are formed, 2 to 3 minutes. Serve with ice cream, or whipped cream, and a sprig of mint.

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