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Garden-Fresh Gazpacho with Mint

This quick and easy variation on the classic Spanish soup from Andalusia needs a few hours of chilling time. Vine-ripened beefsteak tomatoes fresh from the garden make this an even better soup.

Homemade Fennel Sausage

These fennel-scented sausage patties have all of the delicious flavors of a good Italian pork sausage with way, way less fat.

Scallop Stir-Fry

Jícama, a root vegetable available at many supermarkets and Latin American markets, provides added crunch and sweetness to this stir-fry. To cut jícama into matchsticks, first peel it, then halve it through the stem end so that it will lay flat on the work surface. Thinly slice into half rounds then stack the slices and cut them into matchsticks.

Apple-Cranberry Sauce

An immersion blender (also called a hand blender) is an indispensable kitchen tool—especially if you like applesauce. All you have to do is cook up the apples and then use the immersion blender to puree them right in the pan. If you like your applesauce chunky, just blend one-half to two-thirds of the cooked apples.

Citrus Salsa

This is a refreshing "relish" that would go nicely with any simply roasted or broiled poultry.

Grape & Raspberry-Poached Apples

These poached apples make a wonderful herb-scented dessert, but they would also be a nice accompaniment to simple roast poultry or pork.

Asian Noodle Salad

Asian noodle salads make especially good summer fare as many of them actually improve in flavor when prepared in advance. This variation, with fresh oranges, is as lovely to look at as it is to eat.

Banana-Oat Quick Bread

Toasting the oats gives the bread a nutty flavor without adding any fat.

Black Bean Cakes with Spicy Sweet Potato Sauce

Meaty black beans are the main ingredient of patties that are topped with a pureed sweet-potato sauce seasoned with cayenne and fresh lime juice. Serve with a simply dressed salad of mixed greens.

Butternut-Cherry Tea Bread

Butternut squash are generally larger than 1-1/4 pounds, so you can either cut off a chunk of a squash, or roast the whole squash and use only 1-1/4 cups of the roasted squash in the bread. Serve any leftover squash as a vegetable side dish, or use it in place of pumpkin puree in a recipe. The pumpkin pie spice blend called for below is intended to be a convenience, but if you don’t have any, you can simply substitute 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger, and 1/8 teaspoon each allspice and cloves.