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4thIt’s hard to believe that it’s this time of year already!  With the July 4th festivities just around the corner, I’m really getting in the mood for the patriotic holiday.  I started thinking of ways to have a little more fun at my cookouts this weekend and go all out with the red, white and blue theme.  I’m not sure that I’ll try ALL these ideas at one event, but it will be fun to add some patriotic spirit to the table!

You can always rely on watermelon, strawberries or raspberries, blueberries, bananas and yogurt for dessert.  Finding a “patriotic” main dish or side is a little more challenging, but check out these great recipes.  The blueberry salsa is a healthy addition to chicken or fish, and the tasty quinoa salad may make you a fan—if you’re not already—of the high-protein, high-fiber grain.  These recipes are also a great way to celebrate National Blueberry Month!  Often called a “super food,” blueberries are high in vitamin C, fiber and antioxidants—all nutrients that are important for good health.  Aren’t we lucky that they’re also delicious!


blueberry salsaRed & Blue(berry) Salsa 

Makes 4 servings

1/2 c fresh blueberries, chopped

1/2 c fresh whole blueberries

1/2 red bell pepper, seed and diced

1/4 red onion, diced

1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced (optional)

3 TB fresh minced parsley

2 TB fresh minced mint (optional)

1 TB lemon juice

Pinch salt

In a bowl, stir together all the ingredients and refrigerate until ready to use.  Serve alongside grilled chicken or fish.

Recipe from All Through the Year Cheer


quinoa saladPatriotic Quinoa Salad 

Makes 4 servings

1/2 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed

1 cup fresh blueberries

8 ounces fresh strawberries, hulled and diced
Citrus Dressing

1/4 cup olive oil

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

3 tablespoons orange juice

3 tablespoons lime juice

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon honey


Cook quinoa according to package directions. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.

Add blueberries and diced strawberries; set bowl aside.

In a small bowl or a blender, add oil, vinegar, orange and lime juices, honey, and mustard. Whisk or blend until combined. Pour over the quinoa/fruit mixture and use a spoon or salad tongs to toss,

For best results, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes before serving to allow flavors to blend together.

Recipe adapted from It’s Yummi

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