The British summer is here! Which means an abundance of brightly coloured, and fresh flavoured, fruit and vegetables are now in season.
Liven up your menu this summer using these seasonal ingredients.
Time to tomato
Marking the start of tomato season, in July you will find gorgeously ripe, vibrant varieties. So, how do you make the most out of them?
Tip 1 - how to store them
Ripe tomatoes can be stored in the fridge, to slow down the spoiling process and maximise shelf life
Medium and large tomatoes should be stored upside down. Remove the vine and place them stem side down, resting on their 'shoulders'. This stops moisture escaping from the top of the tomato, delaying it from becoming wrinkly and soft
Tip 2 - how to prepare them
Before eating, remove from the fridge to reach room temperature - this allows the flavours to come through much better than if they were chilled
Tip 3 - what works best
Plum tomatoes - crisp, crunchy and bursting with sweetness. Perfect for roasting, tossing into pasta dishes, adding into salads or snacking on
Beef tomatoes - the tomato king; large, meaty and juicy. Ideal for salsas, sauces and dips, or in burgers and BLT's
Cherry tomatoes - sweet and tangy, this tomato is small but mighty in flavour. Perfect for cooking, grilling, in sauces, on skewers and for snacking
Vine tomatoes - left on the vine to soak in the plant's nutrients, this tomato is firm and hearty. Use them in soups, sauces and salads, or simply slice and grill, roast or eat raw
Heritage tomatoes - an abundance of shapes, colours and flavours, the best tomato to liven up any dish. Ideal for a bright salad, bruschetta or served with a creamy ball of burrata
The crunch of courgettes
Tender and fresh with a delicate flavour, courgettes are massively underestimated. Their versatility means they can be grilled, stewed, roasted, fried, stuffed, sliced or shaved raw in salads.
Fry them in fritters
Coarsely grate two courgettes and combine with 2 tbsp self-raising flour, and 25g grated parmesan. Shape into balls then flatten.
Fry for 2-3 minutes on each side until golden brown. An ideal summery starter or delicious light dinner option - a great base to adapt with more flavours.
Marinate and chargrill
A tasty side dish to accompany fish or meat, chargrilling courgettes brings a slightly smoky flavour to complement their natural sweetness.
Simply toss in a little olive oil and griddle for 3-4 minutes on each side. Once cooked, drizzle over some more olive oil, season with salt and pepper and the zest of one lemon. Leave to sit for 15 minutes before serving. For a slightly saltier taste, crumble over some feta cheese.
A berry good pick
Bring a burst of sweetness and colour to any dessert, cocktail or savoury dishes with these seasonal berries.
The powerful blueberry
Small but mighty, the blueberry was one of the first foods to be named a 'superfood', for their health benefits.
Add them into muffins, smoothies, pancakes and puddings. Or cook them down into a jam to use on scones, porridge or swirl into cheesecakes.
Ever had a savoury dish with blueberries? They're perfect for so much more than just sweet dishes. Try them in a salad, or pair with creamy cheeses like brie or goats cheese.
Add a slight tart taste to cocktails - we're talking blueberry mojitos and coladas; they work in pretty much any drink! Try them on your menu this summer.
The finest flavoured of all the berries. The sweet taste and plump texture of raspberries make them perfect for using in a variety of dessert recipes, including brownies, cheesecakes, sorbets, jams, roulades, tarts and lots more.
Spotlight this product in their prime by adding specials on your menu - we're thinking white chocolate and raspberry cheesecake, raspberry ripple ice cream, or a refreshing raspberry daiquiri - the options are endless.