What’s Cooking? Summertime Blues!

Cool, smooth, and oh so soulful, blues are easy to love. In the summer, we are drawn to the blue of the sea, a clear azure sky, a vase full of royal blue delphiniums, blue shutters on a weathered beach cottage, iridescent butterfly wings, a bowl of fresh-picked blueberries. Blue is a cool, refreshing, sophisticated color, easy to decorate with and pleasing to wear.

This Marketplace Pop-Up Collection, Summertime Blues, is full of fresh and colorful ways to bring the beauty of blue into your life year-round. Wrap yourself in an indigo-dyed scarf, hang a photograph of summer by the ocean to inspire you in January, store fruit in a sky-blue ceramic berry bowl, or put on a pair of dangling lapis lazuli earrings. Look at this collection as the Paradise City cure for the summertime blues!

Some necklaces seem meant to be worn with a gauzy dress on a seaside deck sipping a cold margarita. Sheila Fernekes’ beaded beauty in varying shades of blue is definitely one of these. The abstract nature photography by Jeffrey Green can be interpreted in many ways, but this one suggests the rippled surface of a deep ultramarine lake. Peter Handler is a master of color, and his stylish peacock blue Caruso Chair is one of his iconic designs.

The essence of summertime blues is captured by Karen and Geoff Caldwell in their leaded glass window decorated with fauna and flora of the beach. Amy Hudon gives us a double dose of blue in her azurite leaf drop earrings, embellished with sapphires. Mother and daughter team Joan and Jen Ecker of Fat Hat Clothing Co. make the most of periwinkle blue in their easy-to-wear swing jacket. And Lindsey Epstein applies a technically difficult crystalline glaze to give her robin’s-egg-blue vase added dimension. Browse through this collection of dozens of artists in the Paradise City Marketplace who have a special place in their hearts for the color blue.

What else is cooking at Paradise City? It’s blueberry season. Blueberry muffins have been a favorite breakfast food since childhood, and this is the very best recipe we’ve ever tried – tender, light, and really simple to make.

Featured Artists

This Week’s Recipe

Blueberry Muffins

These incredibly light, barely sweet, chock-full of fruit muffins are made with olive oil and yogurt – and no butter at all. We enjoy them for breakfast at least once a week, accompanied by a dollop of fresh ricotta cheese and strawberry or raspberry jam. We use a regular sized muffin tin with 12 cups, but the recipe can also make larger muffins or even a loaf – you just have to bake it longer. Got peaches, strawberries, or cherries instead of blueberries? You can use those (or any combo) instead!


2 cups unbleached white flour
2 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. baking soda
Pinch of salt
½ cup sugar
2 eggs
½ cup mild olive oil (EVO is fine)
1 cup plain yogurt (we use Greek 0%, and thin it with a spoonful of milk)
About 1 ½ cups of blueberries
Turbinado or demerara sugar to top, if desired


  1. Preheat oven to 375°. Grease a muffin tin.
  2. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a large bowl. Sir in the sugar.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, olive oil, and yogurt until smooth.
  4. Pour the yogurt mixture into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Do not over-stir!
  5. Fold in the fruit very gently, using just a few turns. Fill the muffin cups about 2/3 full. Sprinkle them with a little turbinado sugar.
  6. Bake about 20 minutes, or until muffins are golden and a tester comes out dry.