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spicy shrimp lettuce wraps

Karen Covey

As the summer heat settles in, we love to serve quick-cooking meals that require as little time at the stove as possible. As an alternative, you can also keep the shrimp whole (don’t chop them) and cook them on the grill if you prefer to do the cooking outside. This meal is both light and flavorful, and a nice balance of flavors and texture from the spicy shrimp to creamy avocado to a zesty quick slaw. For extra spice, add in more heat as desired. Double the batch for even larger entertaining. It’s great for sharing as everyone can help themselves, making for a more interactive experience. 

1 pound large shrimp, washed, peeled, and deveined
1 large clove garlic, smashed into a paste
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
Pinch cayenne pepper, or to taste
1/4 cup canola oil, divided

Juice from 1 lime
1 tablespoon honey
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
2 cups shredded green cabbage

2 avocados
Leaves from 2 heads Boston bibb lettuce
Fresh cilantro, for serving
Limes, for serving

  1. Pat dry shrimp and finely chop. In a bowl, combine garlic, chili powder, cumin, cayenne and 2 tablespoons canola oil. Season with salt and pepper. Add shrimp and toss well to coat completely. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for about 30 minutes.
  2. Make slaw. In a bowl, combine lime juice and honey. Season with salt and pepper. Add cilantro and cabbage, tossing well to evenly coat. Set aside.
  3. In a nonstick pan, heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add shrimp, and stir constantly until shrimp turn opaque and are cooked through, 3-5 minutes. Remove shrimp and place in a serving bowl. Allow to cool to room temperature.
  4. Cut avocados in half, remove pits (and discard). Using a tablespoon, scoop out avocados and place upside down on a cutting board and thinly slice.
  5. Place a couple of avocado slices in center of 2 lettuce leaves. Add some slaw and some shrimp. Garnish with cilantro and lime juice and repeat with remaining lettuce leaves.

Serves 4-6.

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chive blossom vinegar

Karen Covey

Chive blossoms are really delicious when tossed into a garden salad but we also love this recipe for using the remaining blossoms from our fresh chives for an easy homemade vinegar.  

1/2 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 cup packed chive blossoms

Remove flower heads off of stems and place them in a bowl of cold water to get rid of any grit (or small critters). Once washed, pat them completely dry. Place blossoms in a jar about halfway full, and fill jar with vinegar. Cover and allow to sit at room temperature to steep for about 1 week. When ready to use it, strain the vinegar and transfer it to a clean jar.

Makes approximately 1/2 cup.

chive blossom vinaigrette

In a mason jar, add 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, 1 tablespoon honey, 2 tablespoons chive blossom vinegar, 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Cover jar and shake until completely combined. Taste for flavor and adjust as desired. Toss with your favorite garden greens and enjoy.

chilled zucchini soup

photo by Jennifer Johnson

Any leftover garnish from this soup can be used to make the vinegar. For this and all the other great zucchini recipes featured in our new summer issue, click here to grab a copy.

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summer favorites

Karen Covey

Here’s our curated list for summer!

for our favorite seasonal recipes, be sure to stock up on all of our back issues and get cooking! everything is 1/2 price! 


or get a copy of our new summer issue, on sale now!

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cottage makeover: before + after

Karen Covey

Our new summer issue features the cottage makeover of our very own publisher, Karen J. Covey. Once cloaked in shag carpet and covered from top to bottom with wallpaper, this quaint coastal cottage received a fresh makeover and is now a cook’s dream.

Located along Buzzards Bay in Massachusetts, Karen fell in love with the house from the very first moment. She could see the structure of the house was solid and had tons of potential. Looking past the dated kitchen, outdated fixtures, and small rooms, Karen saw a house waiting for a new, fresh look.

Renovating a house isn’t easy, and the smaller the house, the more difficult it can be. To maximize every inch of space possible, Karen hired a local architect, Will Saltonstall, to help with the design, a step that was well worth the investment. Hiring an architect can seem like unnecessary money in a renovation project but in fact, it’s some of the best money you can spend, especially if your renovating an entire house. Working with a trained professional allows you to look past your own wish list of wants and desires and opens you up to what can really be done. And a good architect helps you create the home of your dreams.

Saltonstall and his team knew that they could relocate the heating unit to the attic and the water system to the basement, allowing that current floor space off the kitchen to now become part of a bigger kitchen with a floor-to-ceiling pantry. Those decisions alone opened up the entire floor plan and allowed Karen and her husband, David, a big open kitchen for entertaining.


To make the space of the small two-bedroom cottage feel larger, they took down the wall at the entrance (seen here) and the wall leading into the kitchen. 


Old-fashioned, build-in A/C units were outdated and not very functional. With all the dampness that comes from living by the beach, the couple opted for central air throughout.


Linoleum floors and vintage wallpaper were quickly replaced with bright white cabinets and dark wood floors. Having the same flooring throughout the cottage helps make the space feel connected.

styling by Abby Capalbo | photos by Erin McGinn

styling by Abby Capalbo | photos by Erin McGinn

Simple white walls and counters, and open shelving in the kitchen keeps this newly renovated cottage light and bright.


To see more photos of the renovation, grab a copy of our new summer issue.

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