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Fudge Brownies

Fudge Brownies

Fudge Brownies

Fudgy home-baked brownies will add a sweet touch to any occasion. A time-honored treat, they’re the perfect choice for a summertime gathering.

Whether it’s a backyard get-together, a family reunion, or a picnic by the lake, these crowd-pleasing goodies are simple to make and are easy to transport.

One thing is certain: old-fashioned goodness never tasted so good.

FUDGE BROWNIES

Nonstick cooking spray
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 1/3 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 tablespoon brewed coffee
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
3/4 cup flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8×8-inch square baking pan with foil, letting ends extend beyond edges on 2 sides. Coat foil with nonstick cooking spray. In a large bowl, whisk together butter, vegetable oil, and sugar. Add eggs, coffee, and vanilla; whisk to combine. Add flour and cocoa powder; stir until smooth. Spread into prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out with moist crumbs attached, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack. Remove brownies by lifting foil ends; peel off foil. Place on a cutting board and cut into squares. Makes 16 brownies.

Fresh Tomato Salsa

Fresh Tomato Salsa

Fresh Tomato Salsa

Savoring red ripe tomatoes is one of the simple pleasures of summer. And when they’re combined with a mixture of other fresh-from-the-garden ingredients and turned into salsa, they’re even better.

Perfect for pairing with tortilla chips, topping off burgers, or embellishing any hot-off-the-grill meat, this refreshing salsa is a delicious way to make use of a bountiful garden.

FRESH TOMATO SALSA

5 medium tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1 small green bell pepper, chopped
2 medium jalapeño chiles, seeded and minced
1/4 cup minced white onion
2 medium scallions, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon pepper

In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients. Cover, and refrigerate at least 1 hour. Makes about 3 cups salsa.

If you enjoy easy seasonal recipes like Fresh Tomato Salsa then pre-order a copy of Cooking, Baking, and Making: 100 Recipes and DIY Ideas for All Seasons and Reasons and get this refreshing summer recipe for Grilled Chicken with Mango Salsa! Summer never tasted so good.

Grilled Chicken with Mango Salsa

Grilled Chicken with Mango Salsa

Herb Cheese Spread

Herb Cheese Spread

Herb Cheese Spread

Easy recipes that can be prepared in a short amount of time are as welcome as a summer breeze. And when they make good use of seasonal ingredients, they’re even better.

By combining a package of cream cheese and a few other ingredients with garden-fresh herbs, a flavorful appetizer can be whipped up in a matter of minutes. Just cover and refrigerate for an hour or up to three days, and spread over assorted crackers.

HERB CHEESE SPREAD

1 (8-ounce) package regular or reduced-fat cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons butter, softened
1 tablespoon milk
1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1/8 teaspoon minced garlic
Salt to taste
Assorted crackers

In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese, butter, and milk. Beat with an electric mixer until creamy. Stir in chives, parsley, garlic, and salt to taste. Cover, and refrigerate at least 1 hour. Serve with assorted crackers. Makes 8 servings.

Pasta Salad

Pasta Salad

Pasta Salad

Perfect for potlucks, backyard barbecues, or to tote to your favorite picnic spot, this pasta salad is a tasty twist on tradition.

By adding a splash of the liquid from a jar of marinated artichoke hearts, it’s easy to boost flavor in the vinaigrette. And you can use store-bought Italian dressing in place of making the vinaigrette, if desired.

Pack into a Mason jar and attach a fork for a fun and convenient way to savor this summer salad.

Check out The Daily Meal’s 12 Perfect Picnic Recipes for Your Next Outdoor Get-together  including this recipe for Pasta Salad. Enjoy!

PASTA SALAD

1 (16-ounce) package rotini (corkscrew) pasta
1 (7.5-ounce) jar quartered marinated artichoke hearts, drained, chopped and reserving 2 tablespoons liquid
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, crushed
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 pound sliced provolone cheese, cut into strips
1/4 pound sliced Genoa salami, cut into strips
1/4 cup minced red onion
1 small red bell pepper, chopped
2 medium tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1 (3.8-ounce) can sliced pitted ripe olives, drained
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

Begin cooking rotini according to package directions.

Meanwhile, prepare vinaigrette. In a medium bowl, combine the 2 tablespoons reserved artichoke liquid, olive oil, vinegar, sugar, salt, oregano, basil, garlic powder, and pepper; whisk until well blended. In a large bowl, combine provolone cheese, salami, onion, pepper, tomatoes, artichoke hearts, olives, Parmesan cheese, and parsley.

Drain rotini; rinse with cold water and drain again. Add rotini to cheese and salami mixture; drizzle with vinaigrette. Toss to combine. Cover and chill for at least 1 hour and up to 1 day in advance. Makes 12 servings.