Corn and Feta Tacos with Lime and Mango
Adapted from www.gardentherapy.ca.
If you prefer cooked corn to raw, simply blanch the corn kernels in boiling water for 1 minute before making this recipe.

  • 4 ears of corn, kernels removed from cobs
  • 2/3 cup mild feta cheese, crumbled
  • 2 tsp. finely grated lime zest
  • 2 1/2 Tbs. lime juice
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 bunch cilantro, rinsed, dried, coarsely chopped
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • salt
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • 2 ripe mangos, peeled, halved, pits removed, sliced into long, thin pieces
  • 2 limes, cut into wedges, for serving

Directions: In a large mixing bowl, combine the corn, feta, lime zest, olive oil, cayenne, cilantro, and scallions. Sprinkle with salt. Heat the tortillas in batches in a hot, dry skillet over high heat. Fill the tortillas with mango slices and corn salad, and serve with lime wedges. Makes 12 tacos.

Star Recommends: Pennautier Viognier
Racy peaches and apricots combined with a light acidity and gentle sweetness make this wine perfect for lighter summer fare—especially if there’s a bit of heat in your dish!


Peach Crisp
Adapted from www.101cookbooks.com.
This delicious crumble-topped dessert lets the peaches shine.

  • 2 lbs. ripe peaches, cut into bite-sized, 1-inch pieces
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 Tbs. plus 1 tsp. cornstarch or arrowroot
  • 1/2 tsp. orange blossom water (optional)
  • 3/4 cup rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cane sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • pinch salt
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 Tbs. lemon zest

Directions: Preheat the oven to 400˚F. In a small bowl, whisk together the honey and cornstarch or arrowroot. Stir in the orange blossom water if using. Place the peaches in a large mixing bowl and pour the honey mixture over the fruit. Toss gently to coat, and transfer to an 8-inch-square baking dish. In a medium bowl, combine the rolled oats, flour, sugar, and cinnamon. Stir in the melted butter and the yogurt, and mix until the mixture turns dough-like. Sprinkle the crumble over the peach mixture in the baking dish. Place the baking dish on the middle rack in the oven and bake until the topping is golden, about 20-25 minutes. Sprinkle with lemon zest. Enjoy warm, or at room temperature. Makes 8 servings.

Star Recommends: Seven Hills Riesling
The wine has aromas of wet stone, citrus and spring flowers. The palate is lightly citrus-sweet up front, moving to a crisp, mineral finish. All in all this is a crisp semi-dry Riesling perfect for bright desserts and warm summer nights.


Warm Corn Salad with Green Beans, Radishes, and Fresh Thyme
Adapted from www.orangette.blogspot.com.
This salad is perfect during that short window when corn is fresh and tender enough to need barely any cooking, or none at all, and green beans and radishes are also at their peak.

  • 6 ears of corn (about 6 cups of kernels)
  • 1/2 lb. green beans, trimmed
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 red onion, large, thinly sliced
  • 1 clove garlic, large, minced
  • 1 Tbs. thyme leaves, fresh
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 4 Tbs. lime juice, fresh
  • 1 bunch red radishes, washed, thinly sliced

Directions: Use a large, sharp knife to cut the kernels from the corn into a large bowl. Set aside. Fill a medium saucepan with water and bring to a boil over med-high heat. Place the green beans in the boiling water and cook for 2 minutes, until they turn from light to darker green. Drain and rinse under cold water until cool. Slice into 2-inch lengths and set aside.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the sliced onion and cook about 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in the garlic and thyme and cook for 1 minute, until fragrant. Add the reserved corn to the skillet and season to taste with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 4-5 minutes. Add the green beans, and cook for another 2 minutes. Remove from heat, and toss with the lime juice. Transfer to a serving dish and top with sliced radishes. Serve. Makes 6 servings.

Star Recommends: Wild Rock Sauvignon Blanc
The wine has aromas of fresh lime juice fruits and herbs. On the palate, lime, nectarine, grapefruit, flavors are rich and rounded with bright acidity leading to a clean, dry finish.


Corn and Tomato Stuffed Avocados
Adapted from www.pipanddebby.com.
If you don’t want to heat up your kitchen with the oven, you can skip broiling these stuffed avocados—they’re just as delicious at room temperature.

  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 1 ear corn, kernels removed
  • 1/4 cup feta, crumbled
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 Tbs. lime juice
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 2 avocados, ripe, halved and pitted

Directions: Preheat broiler. In a large bowl, toss together the tomato, corn, feta, cilantro, lime juice, and salt and pepper to taste. Mound the corn and tomato mixture on top of the four avocado halves. Arrange on a baking sheet and broil for 3-4 minutes. Serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.

Star Recommends: Trimbach Pinot Blanc
Refined nose of green apple, grapefruit, On the palate this dry wine has notes of melon and grapefruit, well-balanced, supple and refreshing. Great for serving as an aperitif or with light meals.


Peach and Cornmeal Upside-Down Cake
Adapted from www.marthastewart.com.
Dried lavender is optional but highly recommended here—
zit creates a perfect trio with the summery, ripe peaches, and slightly crunchy, golden cornmeal. You can find lavender in the Health and Wellness aisle with the bulk teas.

  • 5 1/2 oz. (1 stick plus 3 tablespoons) butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar, divided
  • 1 1/4 lb. peaches, ripe, pitted, cut into 3/4-inch wedges
  • 1 cup coarse yellow cornmeal
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. dried lavender (optional)
  • 1 1/4 tsp. coarse salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

Directions: Preheat oven to 350˚F. In a cast iron skillet, melt 3 tablespoons of the butter over medium heat. Use a pastry brush to coat the sides of the skillet. Sprinkle 1/4 cup of the sugar evenly over the bottom of the skillet, and continue to cook until the sugar turns golden brown and begins to bubble, about 3 minutes. Starting at the outside edge of the skillet working towards the center, arrange the peaches in the skillet, slightly overlapping to fill the skillet. Reduce the heat to low, and cook 10-12 more minutes, until the peaches begin to soften and the juices are bubbling. Remove from heat.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, lavender, and salt. Set aside. In a large bowl with a mixer on high speed, beat the last stick of butter and 3/4 cup of sugar until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to medium. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each egg and scraping down the sides of the bowl. Beat in the vanilla extract and heavy cream. Reduce speed to low, and add half of the cornmeal mixture and beat until incorporated. Beat in the remaining cornmeal mixture.

Drop large spoonfuls of cornmeal batter over the peaches in the skillet, and gently spread it in an even layer using a spatula. Bake 20-22 minutes, until golden brown and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow to cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Run a sharp knife around the edge of the cake. Quickly invert the cake onto a cutting board or serving dish. Firmly tap the bottom of the skillet to release the peaches, and carefully remove the skillet. If needed, reposition the peach slices on top of cake. Allow to cool another 10 minutes before serving. Makes 8 servings.

Star Recommends: Mercat Cava
The nose is composed of pear, green apple and hints of cream. On the palate the wine shows balance with notes of papaya and pear rounded out with hints of hazelnuts, finishing with crisp acidity and freshness. It is a fantastically priced sparkling wine.


Grilled Corn with Basil Butter
Adapted from www.susanspungen.com.
Grilled corn on the cob is incredible when slathered in summery basil compound butter!

  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves, loosely packed
  • 8 Tbs. unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 8 ears of corn, husked

Directions: In a food processor, pulse basil and butter together until thoroughly combined and the basil is in tiny bits. With a rubber spatula, scrape the basil butter into a small dish. Refrigerate until ready to use. Heat a charcoal or gas grill until hot. Use tongs to hold a paper towel dipped in oil, and lightly oil the grill. Grill the corn about 10 minutes, rotating frequently, until tender and lightly charred. Serve hot, with the basil butter, and sprinkled with salt. Makes 8 servings.

Star Recommends: Domain du Cazes Muscat Viognier
This fresh, lively, easy-sipping 2011 Domaine Cazes Le Canon du Maréchal has intense aromas of apricots and orange blossom, and soft, round tropical fruit and peachy flavors with attractive herbal notes.


Summer Peach Salsa
Adapted from www.thekitchn.com.
This peach salsa is nice with tacos and tortilla chips, but try it alongside anything grilled, too!

  • 1 lb. ripe peaches
  • 1/4 cup red onion, finely diced
  • 1/4 cup red bell pepper, seeded, finely diced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded, minced
  • 1 Tbs. fresh mint, minced
  • 1 Tbs. lime juice
  • salt, to taste

Directions: Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Prepare an ice water bath by filling a large bowl of water with ice cubes and cold water. Slice a small “x” into the bottom of each peach. Blanch the peaches in boiling water for 1 minute. Remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to the ice water bath. When cool enough to handle, peel the peaches, then dice them.

In a large bowl, fold together the diced peaches, onion, bell pepper, jalapeno, mint, and lime juice. Season to taste with salt. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.

Star Recommends: Mas de Bressades Rose
Medium rose in hue, this rosé offers fresh and fruity strawberry and cherry aromas with excellent concentration of red fruit flavor and a very dry finish.


Cherry Ricotta Tart
Adapted from www.pinkpatisserie.blogspot.com.
If ricotta isn’t your favorite, use lightly sweetened mascarpone instead, or even whipped cream!

  • 1 lb. ricotta cheese
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 Tbs. heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup turbinado sugar
  • 3/4 cup sliced almonds
  • 1 1/2 lbs. ripe cherries, pitted, halved
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 Tbs. lemon zest
  • 11 Tbs. butter, cold, cut into small pieces
  • 1 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 cup ice water

Directions: In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour and the butter. Pulse until crumbly. While pulsing, slowly add the ice water, and pulse just until the dough comes together into a ball. If needed, add up to two more tablespoons of ice water, a tablespoon at a time. Place the dough on a sheet of plastic wrap and flatten it into a disk. Wrap it snugly in plastic wrap, then place in the freezer for 10 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350˚F.

In a small bowl, whisk together the egg yolk and heavy cream. Transfer the dough onto a large piece of parchment paper, and roll it out into a 12x16-inch rectangle. Trim the edges if necessary. Brush the dough with the egg and cream mixture. Evenly sprinkle the dough with turbinado sugar and the slivered almonds. Bake about 30 minutes, until golden brown. Place on a wire rack and allow to cool completely.

In a mixing bowl, combine the cherries, sugar, and lemon zest. Toss well and refrigerate for 1 hour.

When the pastry has cooled, spread the ricotta over the top. Gently spoon the cherry mixture over the ricotta, and serve.

Star Recommends: Vietti Arneis
This stunning white Italian has a nose of lemon zest. The palate is akin to lemon ice—sweet yet tart. While there is a bit of creaminess in the mouthfeel it finishes with concentrated acidity. Perfect for the patio.