Do you remember? All of the produce in September? (My apologies to both you reader and to Earth, Wind and Fire, but I pretty much sing everything to the tune of “Do You Remember” for this entire month).
September is one of the greatest months for produce IMO. The markets are flooded with tomatoes, apples, corn, radishes, bell peppers, broccoli, cabbage, eggplant, grapes, squash and of course pumpkin. I love to hit the farmer’s markets in September because the weather is just a bit crisper and the veggies hold up so much better after sitting out. Can’t make it to the farmer’s market near you? Do a quick Google Search for “locally sourced grocery stores near me” – you may be surprised to see which stores source from local farmers.
So grab your pen, paper or open the AnyList app and and let’s make a meal plan for next week that makes good use of all fresh fruit and vegetables that September has to offer.
Monday is Labor Day and hopefully you are soaking in the last official day of summer next to the bbq. I will be enjoying a huge bowl of this Mexican Street Corn Salad with Chiptole Crema from The Modern Proper with fresh picked corn. I have been making this on repeat for a few weeks now because I have an amazing neighbor that gifts me with fresh corn from her garden every few days (side note: it is the best corn I have ever eaten). This salad is just the perfect blend of spice and crunch and is highly addictive. While I am happy just eating this salad and enjoying an ice cold margarita, my kiddos need a little more protein so I’m grilling up some hot dogs DIY style for them (Ohhh, I imagine this salad is probably really delicious as a hot dog topping! I will try and report back).
Related: All of our favorite Labor Day recipes in one handy place
Eggplant is just coming on strong in September. One of my favorite ways to cook it is in eggplant parmesan, but that really takes way too much time for weekday meal. That’s why I was super excited to find this recipe for Instant Pot Eggplant Pasta from Two Sleevers. In less than 45 minutes, you have an ooey gooey casserole dish of eggplant, pasta and cheese that everyone will devour. If you are thinking that your kids don’t like eggplant – trust me they won’t even realize there is eggplant in it. The peeled eggplant is broken down by the acidic tomatoes and doesn’t get slimy in the Instant Pot.
Related: A super easy lasagna recipe that welcomes an eggplant addition
Not only do amazing apples start to ripen in September, we are in the thick of wild salmon season. If you can get your hands on some fresh wild Coho Salmon it is worth it, but if you can only get farmed salmon where you live that is totally okay. In fact, there is no real health benefit to farmed vs wild salmon, the important thing is to get that helping of fish each week for the Omega-3 and nutritional benefits. This recipe for Salmon with Apple, Cucumber, Avocado Salsa Recipe from The Vintage Mixer is a simple way to prepare salmon using fresh apples and cucumbers in a bright salsa and the entire meal comes together in about 15 minutes.
Related: How to cook salmon perfectly
My mom used to make the absolute best stuffed peppers and I have forever been in search of her recipe (which I am pretty sure only existed in her head). These Stuffed Peppers from Lisa at Downshiftology are pretty close to my perfect memory. One fascinating thing I learned from Lisa is that all bell peppers start out green! I had no idea. Apparently they change color and get sweeter as they ripen, and those red bell peppers have twice the amount of vitamin C of green bell peppers (which is also why they typically cost more than green ones). So, I’m going to let the green peppers out there in my garden hang out for a couple more weeks and see what color I get.
Glorious tomatoes come into season in early September. So that also means it is also Bacon Lettuce and Tomato sandwich season. I have found a new favorite twist on this classic sandwich called BLT with Pepperoncini Mayo created by Carolyn’s Cooking. The pepperoncini mayo is just pure genius and so dang good. You may find yourself eating it on all of the things. I suggest making this sandwich with those ripe, delicious heirloom tomatoes you can find at your local farmer’s markets and at most stores right now.
Related: Too many tomatoes? 6 simple methods to preserve them.
Follow our Weekly Meal Plan Ideas for Families board on Pinterest @CoolMomEats for even more ideas!
I put these weekly meals plans together based on recipes I am actually cooking for my family, and with you in mind. If you have suggestions, tips or recommendations for recipes or other food bloggers I should check out please comment here, or shoot me a message in our Recipe Rescue group on Facebook. – Lisa
Top Image: Photo by Jordan Christian on Unsplash