Marge Perry, Newsday's weekly 3 Simple columnist, also writes, broadcasts, teaches and speaks about cooking, food and nutrition.
TIP To choose watermelon, look for a darker "field spot" (the brownish area of the rind) that indicates the watermelon was allowed to ripen longer in the field.
All recipes make four servings.
GRILLED CHICKEN BREASTS WITH SUMMER VEGETABLE TOPPING
1 ear corn, cooked
1 plum tomato, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 peach, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1/2 cucumber, peeled, seeded and cut into 1/4-inch dice
1/4 cup diced red onion
1/2 avocado, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1/2 jalapeño, finely minced
2 tablespoons cilantro leaves, chopped
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1 pound boneless chicken breasts, cut into 4 even pieces
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1. Cut kernels from corn and combine with tomato, peach, cucumber, onion, avocado, jalapeño, cilantro, lime juice and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt.
2. Coat the grill rack with cooking spray or oil; heat grill.
3. Pound chicken to 1/2-inch thickness. Season with remaining salt, cumin and pepper. Grill 4 minutes on each side until well marked and a thermometer inserted in center reaches 160 degrees. Serve with topping.
Nutritional analysis per serving 216 calories, 26 g protein, 13 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 7 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 720 mg sodium
MAPLE-MUSTARD MARINATED CHICKEN THIGHS
1/4 cup spicy brown mustard
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 teaspoons cider vinegar
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
2 pounds (6 to 8) chicken thighs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1. Combine mustard, maple syrup, brown sugar, vinegar and Worcestershire sauce in a large bowl. Add the chicken and toss thoroughly. Cover and refrigerate 2 to 8 hours.
2. Coat grill rack with cooking spray or oil; heat grill for indirect heat cooking (see tip). Season chicken with the salt and place skin-side down on the unheated side of the grill; cook until well marked, 10 to 12 minutes. Turn and cook until a meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the center registers 175 degrees, about another 10 to 12 minutes (depending on the size of the thighs).
Nutritional analysis per serving 360 calories, 30 g protein, 10 g carbohydrates, 0 g fiber, 20 fat, 5 g fat, 571 mg sodium
GRILLED CHICKEN BREASTS WITH SWEET AND SPICY BARBECUE SAUCE
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon molasses
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon dried cumin
1 tablespoon canned chipotle in adobo sauce, minced
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 pounds bone-in skinless chicken breasts cut into 4 pieces
1. Heat oil in a medium-size saucepan over medium-high heat; add onion and cook, stirring, until somewhat softened, about 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and add ketchup, sugar, molasses, chili powder, cumin and chipotle. Simmer until thickened, about 10 minutes.
2. Coat grill rack with cooking spray and heat the grill for indirect grilling (see tip). Season chicken with pepper and place flesh-side down (bones facing up) on unheated side of grill and cook, turning once, with the lid closed for 25 minutes.
3. Turn chicken so flesh side faces up and place over direct heat. Brush top of chicken with sauce, close lid and grill 3minutes, until sauce begins to form a glaze on chicken. Brush again, and again close grill; cook until meat thermometer registers 160 degrees in center of thickest part of chicken, another 2 to 3 minutes. The remaining sauce may be served with chicken. Makes 4 servings.
Nutritional analysis per serving 309 calories, 30 g protein, 31 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 7 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 999 mg sodium