Farmers' markets are lush with the first round of summer fruits and veggies. From squash to strawberries, summer produce is some of the most flavorful and colorful. Discover the best ways to use these summer gems with our creative recipes, sure to please all palates.
Plus: More great summer recipes.
Basil is heady stuff - highly aromatic, super prolific, and simple to grow. Bring on the tomatoes, the mozzarella, the chicken, the pasta, the shrimp: by growing basil in your garden, your cooking is about to take an inspired leap.
Learn more about growing basil.
Pasta e f-- ioli with Pesto
Use fresh, locally grown ingredients for very tasty fare. Pesto adds robust flavor to this one-dish pasta supper.
Get the recipe.
We make this divine Italian classic with fresh mozzarella and hand-torn basil leaves.
Get the recipe.
Crisp, sweet, and delicious, this humble vegetable manages to capture the essence of the season in a single, satisfying bite. Use corn in
Blog Posts by Country Living
Farmers' markets are lush with the first round of summer fruits and veggies. From squash to strawberries, summer produce is some of the most flavorful and colorful. Discover the best ways to use these summer gems with our creative recipes, sure to please all palates.Read More »from 10 Delicious Ways to Use Summer Produce
Fire up that grill! For the ultimate no-fail hamburger that delivers delicious flavor in every bite, follow these tips and tricks from some of America's best chefs.
Plus, get more tips on building the perfect burger.
For Michael Romano, the former executive chef of New York's Union Square Cafe and Shake Shack, it's all about the bun. His choice: a soft, compliant brioche. "I've never been a fan of putting burgers on English muffins...too stiff upper lip. To me, that's like putting starch in your sheets," Romano says.
If you don't want the bun to get soggy, he says, don't leave the meat on it too long before eating. Romano also includes yellow Cheddar for "bite and the iconic look it gets when it melts."
Michael Romano's Ingredients
- Brioche or other soft hamburger bun, brushed with butter and toasted
- Raw red onion
- Fresh tomato
- Sharp yellow Cheddar
- Fresh ground chuck (80 percent lean, never frozen)
- Country Living | Work + Money – Thu, May 19, 2011 7:48 PM EDT
Even though jetsetting of to an exotic locale may be appealing, sometimes it's just not possible. If you can't make it to a white sand beach or a secluded mountain retreat this year, follow our tips to have a "staycation" that you'll never forget.If you can escape for a week or two, check out our favorite historic hotels, inn, and B&Bs.
Host A Wine And Cheese TastingDon't fret if you can't make it to Napa Valley this summer! Peruse the wine and cheese aisles of your local market for exciting regional finds. Make a complete tasting platter with four or five cheeses of varying firmness and pungency.
Create A Cozy BedSpend the day reading in the comfort of your own bed. With the right sheets, blankets, and pillows, you might never want to leave - and you might even forget that you're at home!
Follow our guide to make the most comfortable bed.
Relax In The TubPick out your favorite bath salts and books, pull the curtains tight, and relax in a cool bath. Add Read More »from No Budget For A Summer Vacation? Stay Home (And Have A Blast)
School is out and fun is in! In between summer vacations and trips to the beach, get rid of summer boredom with our fun summer crafts that anyone can do. These easy crafts are a great way to beat the heat and discover a little summer creativity.Read More »from 4 Kid-Friendly Summer Crafts
Plus: Make it a picnic with these delicious summer sandwiches.
1) Turn paper doilies into drink umbrellas.
Dress up your lemonade with blogger Olivia Kanaley's adorable accents. To re-create these, you'll need card stock, a glue stick, doilies, and wooden skewers - and of course, a pitcher of your favorite summer refreshment.
See the rest of the instructions here.
2) A piñata that will leave party guests abuzz.
Add some buzz to your party with crafter Kirsten Field's irresistible papier-mâché hive. Made for just $10, including bees, this honey-sweet project is sure to be a hit.
See complete instructions here.
To populate your hive with bees, hot-glue a one-inch black pom-pom to a two-inch yellow pom-pom.
Cut 2 two-inch-long pieces of
Timing is everything, according to Mark Di Vincenzo, who literally wrote the book on seasonal sales: Buy Ketchup in May and Fly at Noon.
Check out more great deals- all under $50! Here's what he says you should shop for this month (besides ketchup) and beyond:
What to Buy in May
Replace your fridge. Since new appliances often debut in the summer, you'll spend hundreds less toward the end of spring, when stores clear their stockrooms of older models.Bonus: Get inspired with our ultimate guide to kitchen decorating.
What to Buy in June
Build up the toolbox. During the weeks before Father's Day, hardware chains tend to offer promotions on drills, saws, and more to lure gift-shoppers. Get Dad started with these DIY ideas.
What to Buy in July
Swap out your sofa. As retailers make way for fall furniture, discontinued styles go for a fraction of their original costs. Want a real steal? Opt for a floor sample. Can't afford a new couch? See how our editorsRead More »from Secrets to Summer's Best Sales
Celebrate Mom with breakfast fit for a queen: egg-and-sausage casserole, garlic potatoes, just-baked scones- even mango mimosas.
Breakfast Casserole with Turkey Sausage, Mushrooms, and Tomatoes
By using egg whites and turkey sausage, plus low-fat milk and cheese, in this hearty breakfast casserole, you save 129 calories, 14 grams of fat, and 137 milligrams of cholesterol per serving.
Get the Recipe: Breakfast Casserole with Turkey Sausage, Mushrooms, and Tomatoes
Make a better brunch side dish: Slices of potato are roasted until crispy and golden, then topped with garlic and parsley infused butter and salty pecorino cheese.Make brunch extra special with this one-of-kind table setting for Mother's Day.
Get the Recipe: Garlic Potatoes
Here creamy avocado is quickly charred on the grill for another layer of texture and flavor. CombinedRead More »from Best-Ever Motherâ€™s Day Brunch
Cookbook author Virginia Willis takes delicious liberties with her family's old favorites, serving ham flavored with lavender, simple roasted sweet potatoes, and citrus-spiked strawberry shortcake. (The biscuits, however, are completely classic.)Plus: Move over Peeps! Celebrate Easter with these recipes and decorating ideas for festive bunny cakes, fruity desserts, and other yummy treats.
To keep everyone's stomach from grumbling before dinner, Virginia sets out a horseradish- buttermilk dip along with crunchy 'Watermelon' and 'Cherry Belle' radishes.
Get the recipe: Sliced Radishes with Horseradish-Buttermilk Dip
Simplicity's the way to go with asparagus, says Virginia, who steams the spears, then tops them with tangerines.
Get the recipe: Steamed Asparagus with Tangerines
Bonus: Find out what Paula Deen has to say about her American Dream.
Lavender Herb Ham
"It surprisesRead More »from The Easter Dinner Youâ€™ll Never Forget
Let your little ones celebrate the holiday with these creative projects. Plus: Plan your Easter menu with help from Cookbook Queen Virgina Willis.
1) Play it by Ear
To stitch up one of these kid-friendly accessories, you'll need a child-size headband ($3.99; drugstore.com) and 11⁄2 yards of 1⁄2-inch-wide double- fold bias tape. (For a range of prints, from $9.50 for three yards, visit etsy.com/shop/pollydangernotions.)See instructions here!
2) Feather your nest with papier-mâché
Take a page from the grade-school activity book with these delicate candy dishes, made using shredded brown lunch bags and sheets from an old dictionary. See instructions here!
3) Easy-to-Dye Easter Eggs
The secret to these mini masterpieces? Foliage and flowers gathered from the garden. Blogger Sonia Bauer (bigsislilsis.com) of Oceanside, California, simply positioned a blossom or a leaf facedown against eachRead More »from 4 Adorable Easter Crafts for Kids
Didn't get an invite to the Royal Wedding? Thanks to knitting genius of author Fiona Goble, you can stitch together your celebration. Buy her book here!
Like many strokes of genius, this book started as a joke. The engagement photo of Will and Kate had just been released and Goble's publishers had a hunch the book would be a hit- even across the pond. Feeling crafty? Try out one of these adorable DIY projects.Check out more pictures of the knitted Royal Couple here!
Although Goble admits this book isn't for beginners, she encourages more experienced knitters to give these royal dolls a shot. "If you've knitted baby booties then I don't think you'll have trouble. Take your time and make them your own," she says.
The trick is focusing on the distinctive features (like the Queen's hair or Harry's rosy cheeks) without making the dolls look like characters. Kate was most difficult because she's very pretty, Goble said. There's no official word on the royal wedding dress,Read More »from Knit Your Own Royal Wedding Party
- Country Living | Work + Money – Thu, Mar 17, 2011 11:53 PM EDT
At this time of year, every plant seems like a good idea. Spring is seeded with hope- and fed by optimistic catalog descriptions and growers' hyperbole. Eventually, though, reality sets in, when many of the latest, newest, and rarest specimens turn out to be fair-weather friends. Fact is, a garden's success depends on steady, reliable performers. We asked some of the best landscape designers to reveal their top, time-tested picks. Here are the plants they turn to again and again.Read More »from Gardener's Secret Weapons: 6 Plants Anyone Can Grow
Plus: Great gifts for gardeners- all under $25!
Oakleaf Hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia) Zones 5-9
"One of the easiest, showiest, most useful perennials, this hydrangea boasts bold foliage that turns maroon in the fall, as the huge flower clusters fade to pink. It'll also tolerate dryish shade and thrives in just about any climate." -David McMullin, Atlanta
Find out how to turn your garage into a garden shed!
Flower Carpet Rose (Rosa 'Noatraum') Zones 5-10
"No matter what soil you plant it in, this