'Healthy Living for Summer': Cooking with fresh, seasonal ingredients

How to cook healthy meals with fresh ingredients and seasonal items.

— -- Fresh produce, organic ingredients, and seasonal fruits and vegetables are all elements that contribute to a nutritious meal. For the first episode of ABC News' "Healthy Living for Summer" series, we spent an afternoon cooking with Chef Yasmina Ksikes.

Ksikes, 41, is a chef with Cozymeal in Los Angeles, and has been cooking since she was 6 years old. Ksikes grew up in Morocco and said her favorite place to spend time as a child was in the kitchen.

"We went to the market almost every day before school," Ksikes said. "We'd shop for everything seasonal, that's the only way we ate growing up."

Quick tips

  • Shop at a farmers' market when you can
  • Don't shop in bulk to keep your food fresh
  • The longer fruits and veggies sit in a fridge, the more they lose nutritional value
  • Pickling and fermenting can be a good option to save food instead of wasting it
  • Try to plan your menu in advance
  • Be adventurous with herbs
  • Use the skin when you can; for example: lemons hold more vitamins in skin than juice
  • Be resourceful and don't be afraid to experiment
  • Ksikes cooked two dishes with us, Moroccan beet salad and saffron salmon over couscous and vegetables.

    Watch ABC News cook a healthy summer meal in the video above.
    This weekly health series will continue throughout the summer.