One Gorgeous No-Cook Summer Meal

Every now and then, those red threads that connect our heels across the expansive Universe are pulled by invisible forces and your life crosses paths with someone you know you were meant to meet.

A hundred and two years ago, when I was a newbie mom to twins, a 2-year-old, and a 4-year-old, I got it in my mind that I could somehow, miraculously organize the chaos of my life. I prepped a FlyLady notebook, tracked every household chore with colors and markers and shiny stickers, woke in the morning and showered before noon, and came across a brilliant new menu-planning website, The Six O’ Clock Scramble, which quite literally saved my sanity weekly.

So, a few months ago, when I saw Aviva Goldfarb, founder of the Six O’ Clock Scramble, on the list of guests attending an upcoming blog event I’d been invited to, it was bigger than meeting Britney, y’all. Aviva’s simple, splendid, no-nonsense approach to menu planning had been a lifeline for me and it was serious celebrityhood to be in the same room with her.

So, then, imagine my sheer delight to learn that, on top of being a remarkable business woman, Aviva is just a remarkably open, light-hearted, deeply good, and utterly enjoyable human. We kept in touch after our first meet-up, her have a penchant for doing what she says she’ll do followed up post-trip with a thoughtful phone call and email offering business advice and help and I, having a penchant for truly lovely people decided to tuck her into my pocket and steal her forever.

That pic up there? It so nicely captures the essence of Aviva. Up and at ’em for an early morning hike in Carmel last week. Ears perked to listen, kickass humor lining the conversation, disarming warmth and honesty, deep breaths of misty ocean air to go with thoughts on life and everyday somethings. Ooooh, I like Aviva.

And, Aviva likes you. She offered up one of her fave vegetarian recipes from her site. With a focus on healthy cooking, The Six O’Clock Scramble will give you weekly menu plans that focus on easy, fresh, healthy meals which can be pulled together in minutes. And sweet mother, from sheer experience (read: surviving the first year of twins) I can tell you, The Six O’ Clock Scramble recipes, organization, and ideas are an absolute gift.

If you’re looking for a better way to get organized, get cooking, and get healthy food on the table fast, subscribe yourself to The Scramble and make Aviva’s amazing menu plans a rockstar part of your life. In the meantime, I’ll be eating Israeli Salad and conjuring plans for our next morning hike.

Miss Aviva, I don’t plan on letting you get very far away from me. It’s red thread thing, you know. Mwah!

The Six O’Clock Scramble, an online family dinner planner created by Aviva Goldfarb, is a fantastic solution for busy parents who want to get healthy dinners on the table but feel squeezed for time. The Scramble gives thousands of families a ready-made, seasonal dinner plan for the week, including sidedishes and a grocery list, so they can let go of all the stress at 6:00 andbring joy and good nutrition back to the dinner table.


Israeli Salad with Tahini Lemon Dressing


4 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
2 cucumbers, peeled and diced into small pieces
1 lb. cherry tomatoes, diced into small pieces (or use 2 large tomatoes)
½ red onion, finely diced
½ cup fresh parsley, chopped
2 Tbsp. tahini (sesame paste), well stirred (or use hummus if you can’t find tahini)
1 lemon, juice only, about 4 Tbsp.
2 tsp. Dijon mustard (use wheat/gluten-free if needed)
1 tsp. minced garlic (about 2 cloves)
2 Tbsp. water
2 tsp. honey
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup pita chips, broken into small pieces


Hard boil the eggs, if necessary (cover them with water in a small saucepan, bring water to a boil, simmer partially covered for 10 minutes, and then transfer to an ice bath [bowl of very icy water] for a few minutes before peeling).

In a medium serving bowl, combine the chopped eggs, cucumbers, tomatoes, onions and parsley.

(Warm the pita bread, if you are serving it.) In a small bowl or large measuring cup, combine the tahini, lemon juice, mustard, garlic, water, honey and salt. Toss the salad with the dressing (you might not need all of the dressing) and pita chips, and serve it immediately. (You can make the salad and dressing up to 4 hours in advance but don’t combine them until you are ready to serve). Season the salad with black pepper, if desired.

Do Ahead or Delegate: Cook and chop the eggs, peel and dice the cucumbers, dice the tomatoes and the red onion, make the dressing.

Scramble Flavor Booster: Add olives or tuna to the salad.

Tip: While we suggest dicing the salad ingredients into small pieces, use your judgment. If you prefer a “chunkier” salad, feel free to make the pieces a little larger.

Side Dish suggestion: Serve it with hummus with warm pita bread, cut in wedges, or pita chips.


20 Responses to “One Gorgeous No-Cook Summer Meal”

  1. Oh my gosh, you make me cry, Brookey! I feel so incredibly blessed to have you in my life, and you were so kind to do a post recommending my system so strongly. I am truly verklempt. By the way, you are an awesome, soulful writer with a lot of books and essays in side of you. You are truly a beautiful, caring, vibrant soul and you have taught me so much in the short time I have known you. I know I have met a lifelong friend.

  2. Darbi says:

    Looks amazing! How many servings does this make?

  3. Skye says:

    This looks yummy, but, um… it’s definitely not vegan… the first ingredient is eggs! (It also contains honey.) Perhaps you were a little too star-struck when you posted it to notice :)

    • Brooke says:

      LOL! THANK YOU, Skye! Apparently I DID get a little starstruck and failed to write “vegetarian” instead of vegan! Yeeps!


  4. Looks great! We are going to have to give it a try sometime!

  5. anna says:

    israeli salad is just calling to me lately. thanks for the links too i will be checking out the scramble!

  6. This salad is really speaking to me right now, it looks so fresh and perfect for this hot weather we’ve been having!

  7. […] fresh, healthy meals which can be pulled together in … … Here is the original post: One Gorgeous No-Cook Summer Meal | Cheeky Kitchen ← FAQ? on Cooking Lessons, Private Chef & Catering Services – Blogs The Fast […]

  8. Colleen says:

    I have both of Aviva’s cookbooks and just love her, too! Was it last summer you got together with Kelle Hampton??? Lucky, lucky you!!!! To do something you love AND get to meet some of the most wonderful people in the blogosphere…wow! Happy Friday to you!

  9. I am just so happy to find something else to make with that giant jar of tahini I bought for making hummus.

  10. Jeremy says:


    I like the looks of this! 2 questions for nutrition, what is the serving size and how many servings does this make?


  11. Wow, this salad looks incredible! My boyfirend and I love mediterranian food and this would be fantastic!

  12. JulieD says:

    You both are amazing!! So glad I got to meet you both last month!! xoxo

  13. Arminda says:

    Mmmmmm! This looks fantastic and I can’t wait to try it. You haven’t disappointed me yet (nor do I expect you will) with any of your creations, Brooke, and if you’re recommending Aviva, then I’ll embrace her in the same way you’ve become part of my culinary world.

  14. Ilya says:

    Just seeing this now for some reason but love the picture!

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    You are my guardian angel in foods.

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