The summer vegetable growing season is full upon us and it is now time to reap the benefits of your labor. But sometimes that abundance of luscious vegetables can be overwhelming. Spice For Life has two recommendations for some of our favorite and easy vegetable recipes. One suggestion is a cucumber grape gazpacho; and the other is grilled eggplant with fresh basil.

Cucumber Grape Gazpacho with Cajun Shrimp
This is a take-off on the traditional tomato gazpacho that graces the menu of so many restaurants. This cold sweet and savory soup is so versatile because it can be used as an appetizer or as a light main course. It only takes 30 minutes to make. And the soup can be done right before serving or made 24 hours ahead of time and placed in the refrigerator. The unique combination of cucumbers and grapes, not often used together, provides a sweet and savory balance of flavors. These flavors are enhanced by the turmeric coriander salt and white peppercorns. Garnish the soup with toasted slivers of almonds and shrimp tossed and cooked with our Cajun seasoning. This finishes off the soup with a little crunch and subtle spiciness, making the soup pop. What better way to use up those cucumbers in your garden!

Grilled Eggplant with Fresh Basil
Eggplant is a wonderful summer vegetable easy to grill because its thick. We enhance the meaty-like flavor of the eggplant with our Berbere blend. Berbere is found in Middle Eastern and African dishes. It is a traditional spicy blend that has a wonderful earthy fiery flavor and brick red color, which comes from its blend of chilis, paprika, and cardamom. It goes extremely well on eggplant. We garnish the dish with chopped fresh basil from the garden.

So, now is the time to dig in and enjoy those summer vegetables!

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