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Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Posted by caliloo (My Page) on
Sat, Jun 7, 08 at 17:16

Blech!

It is too early for it to be in the mid-90's and humid. I just wilt in this weather! Please post some of your ideas for dinners that I can make the next few nights without heating up the kitchen too much. I don't mind doing a quick saute, but nothing baked and nothing that I will have to stand outside and watch the grill. If it is quick on the grill - fish, etc that would be fine though....

I welcome sides, entrees and even desserts.... maybe some new ideas will convince the picky one to even try some new foods.

Thanks for any and all suggestions!

Alexa


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

I need some new ideas also, good topic Alexa.

Here's some of the things we like, Seafood or tuna pasta salad with lots of veggies and seafood, we also throw in frozen peas. Good hot dogs, chicken salad on bread or greens, I've been flattening BSCB and dusting with seasoned flour then frying quick on the stove. I do several pkgs at a time and freeze them after cooking. Great to just heat up in the microwave for a quick chicken sandwich or cut after warmed into strips for on a salad.

I stopped after working today and picked up deli shaved ham and turkey for cold sandwiches tonight. I just made a plate of tomatoes and fresh mozzarella, it's marinating in the refrig with Italian dressing. I also have spring greens and will make a salad with crab, cucumbers and dressing. Dessert will be ice cream with fresh peaches.

Nancy


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Put three pounds of washed mussels in a pot with half a cup of white wine, garlic cloves, basil leaves and chopped tomatoes. Steam until mussels open. Serve with bread.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

One of my favorite things to have on a hot evening (I live in Florida, so there are ALOT of them) is Gazpacho soup. Also, Seven Layer Salad, Taco Salad or a Sub sandwich. Those are all on my menu for this week, it's been hot here already!

Here is a link that might be useful: Recipes


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

We had grilled salmon last week-end, and it gets done in 5 minutes. It's been in the upper 60s here lately, however, and so it's almost too chilly to eat outside, but since there is no wind, it's okay.

Here's my recipe for Crab Louis, and the dressing to go with it. The only bad thing is boiling/steaming the eggs.

Here's my recipe for Muffuletta relish, which is used on sandwiches. This sandwich is flavorful enough to be used for dinner, I think, if you add a regular salad on the side.

Sausages will grill without heating the kitchen too much - we had that yesterday.

Lars


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Cold poached salmon, served with cucumber dill sauce

Fresh sliced tomatoes and sliced cucumbers on lettuce leaves garnished with chopped chives or green onions, light dressing

hardboiled eggs or deviled eggs

buttered new potatoes

a glass of cold white wine


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

When it's hot, I like to grill early in the morning with foods that reheat fine. Which is most meats and some vegetables. Red peppers, corn, zucchini, asparagus. And/Or I use them in new ways...chicken pasta Caesar salad, for instance, using grilled chicken. Or fish cakes. Or turning the grilled corn into fritters. It still keeps most of the heat out of the house and adds a lot of flavor to recipes.
My favorite food when it's hot though is easy: strawberries, ice, and a bit of sugar in the fp- add redi whip on top and it's delicious.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

I love eating Russian Vinegret Salad in the summer (well, all the time; it's almost always in my fridge). It's a cooked salad, served cold. Tastes great, keeps really well, and is surprisingly good on sandwiches.

Instructions:
Finely dice, then boil for about 3-5 minutes: 2-3 potatoes and 2-3 carrots. In the last minute of cooking, toss in some frozen peas.

Finely dice, then boil separately: 1-2 medium beets. Or finely dice some canned (NOT pickled) beets. Either way, rinse the beets at least three times.

Finely dice one medium yellow onion.

Finely dice 3 dill pickles.

Put the ingredients together in a bowl and mix. Pour 1/4 cup white wine vinegar, S&P and dill. Or use your own favorite vinaigrette. Refrigerate for a few hours before serving. Delicious with rye or whole-wheat rustic breads.
------------------------------------

I also like making omelettes in the summer.

And hummus with veggies on pita. Or just veggies with hummus as a dip.
--------------------------------------------
Jicama slaw is great in the summer, too. I make mine with jicama, yellow or orange bell peppers, purple onion, orange slices, and avacado. I lost my recipe for the viniagrette, but I usually just throw together white vinegar, the juice from an orange, a little oil and S&P.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

I had salmon patties with coleslaw for dinner--it didn't heat up the kitchen too much. I also made russian salad last week, that was good, but I make mine with added goat or feta cheese if I'm using beets, tuna if I don't use beets. Plus add sunflower seeds for more protein. It does make a meal and would be awesome with a rye or pumpernickle bagel and some of your pepper jelly!!

Do you like tabouleh? One of my favortie summer meals is tabouleh, cucumber salad made with sour cream and chives or scallions and lemon juice, falafel or hummus with pita, some good olives, and cantelope melon filled with ice cream or frozen yogurt for dessert. It's really too early for melon, but you could have strawberries or some other fruit.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Great idea for a thread, as I'm interested, too! I know what you mean about the grill - it's still a hot thing and it's worse if yours is a charcoal type.

How about the microwave? I used ours a lot last summer - first, we were in a kitchen remodel that began the 30th of July, but second, it just made sense when we had really hot weather that had started earlier that month! I nuked a lot when the weather turned hot.

DonnaR/CA


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

I like to do kabobs on the grill. Usually chicken or shrimp. They take only a few minutes. Add peppers., mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, any veggie you like and you have two courses of your meal!

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Salad Nicoise is always good. No recipe, I just use romaine, steamed green beans or asparagus, cooked new potatoes, hard boiled egg, make a herb vinaigrette and mix a little of it with some tuna, then top the salad with the tuna ans a bit more dressing.

We do tacos quite often in the summer, too. And stir fry is always easy and quick.

Here are a couple more. The gazpacho recipe may have come from someone here, I don't recall. I have had it for a very long time.

Gazpacho

9 large vine-ripened tomatoes
2 medium cucumbers, peeled, seeded, and chopped
1 medium red onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
1/3 cup olive oil
6 tablespoons red wine vinegar, or to taste
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 to 2 jalapeno peppers, finely chopped
Salt and freshly milled black pepper
1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil leaves, cilantro, or parsley (optional)

Core the tomatoes and dip into boiling water for about 10 seconds to loosen the skin. Place the tomatoes in ice water to cool, then slip off their skins. Cut the tomatoes in 1/2 crosswise and squeeze out the juice and seeds into a strainer over a bowl. Reserve the juice and discard the seeds. Puree 1/2 of the tomatoes in a food processor or blender. Coarsely chop the remaining tomatoes.

Combine the pureed and chopped tomatoes in a bowl and add the reserved juice. Stir in the cucumbers, red onion, bell pepper, oil, vinegar, garlic, and jalapeno peppers. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Chill for at least 1 hour before serving. Divide gazpacho among 6 serving bowls. Sprinkle the fresh herbs over the bowls for garnish, if desired.
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Greek Country Salad

2 c torn romaine leaves
1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
1 medium tomato cut in wedges
1/2 medium cucumber, thinly sliced
1/2 medium green pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
12 pitted black olives, sliced
1 T extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp capers, drained & rinsed
1 tsp white wine vinegar
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp chopped fresh dill
2 oz feta cheese, crumbled

In medium salad bowl, combine lettuce, onion, tomato, cucumber, green pepper and olives. Refrigerate until well chilled.

In small bowl, combine oil, capers, vinegar, lemon juice and dill, mixing well. Toss with salad ingredients and top with feta cheese. Serve immediately.
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Mufulettas
Source: Giada DeLaurentis

1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/3 cup olive oil
10 large pitted green olives, chopped
1/3 cup pitted, chopped kalamata olives
1/4 cup chopped roasted red bell peppers
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 (1-pound) round bread loaf (about 7 inches in diameter and 3 inches high)
4 ounces thinly sliced ham
4 ounces thinly sliced mortadella
4 ounces thinly sliced salami
4 ounces sliced provolone
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1 1/2 ounces arugula leaves
Whisk the first 3 ingredients in a large bowl to blend. Gradually blend in the oil. Stir in the olives and roasted peppers. Season the vinaigrette, to taste, with salt and pepper.
Cut the top 1-inch of the bread loaf. Set the top aside. Hollow out the bottom and top halves of the bread. Spread some of the olive and roasted pepper mix over the bread bottom and cut side of the bread top. Layer the meats and cheeses in the bread bottom. Top with the onions, then the arugula. Spread the remaining olive and roasted pepper mix on top of the sandwich and carefully cover with the bread top. You can serve the sandwich immediately or you can wrap the entire sandwich tightly in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator a day before serving.
Cut the sandwich into wedges and serve.

*These are delicious, and even better the next day!
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This one is from Marilyn. We love it!

Steamed Tilapia
Source Marilyn Cole

Season filets on flesh side as desired with fresh ground pepper, sea salt and herbs of your choice. I like to use Cajun seasoning sometimes. Drizzle with a good extra-virgin olive oil.

Drizzle a little more olive oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat until hot. Place filets in hot skillet seasoned side down for 3 to 4 minutes, carefully turn over, add 1 tablespoon dry white wine (or chicken broth) for each filet, place a lid on the skillet and remove from the heat. Fish will be done in 3 minutes. Serve immediately seasoned side up topped with liquid left in pan.

Pictured above with green bean mushroom saut an grilled corn with cumin lime butter 2006
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FESTIVE SHRIMP (Serves 4)
1/3 cup butter
2 TBL olive oil
2 shallots, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 lb uncooked shrimp, peeled & deveined
3 small plum tomatoes, seeded & chopped
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp each, salt & pepper
1/2 cup dry sherry
3 bunches fresh spinach, rinsed, drained, stems removed
1/2 cup heavy cream
Hot cooked rice
Melt the butter w/the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat.
Add the shallots, garlic, oregano, basil, salt and pepper. Saut 5 minutes.
Add the shrimp, saute 2 -3 minutes so they are about 1/2 cooked. Remove from pan.
Add tomatoes and sherry, simmer for 5 minutes.
Add the cream and spinach, simmer so cream reduces a bit. Add shrimp back to pan, simmer another 2 minutes to finish shrimp. Serve over rice. ~~
Posted by Weed

Hope some of these inspire you!

Linda


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Oh Lars! I wonder if that Muffeletta is anything like the one Trader Joe's used to sell? My husband always talks about how good it was, but they don't carry it anymore (well, at least the store near us doesn't). I'll have to try making it for him, he'll be over the moon.

I love a cold noodle salad when it's hot. You prepare all the ingredients in the morning, while it's still cool, and then it sits in the fridge marinating until dinner time. It can be made with packages of fresh Chinese noodles from the produce section or dried noodles, heck, I've even made it with Top Ramen noodles!

Asian Noodle Salad
Dressing:

1/2 c soy sauce
1/2 c sesame oil (Asian brand, not Indian...it should be dark in color and smell strongly of sesame)
1/4 c balsamic vinegar
1/4 c sugar
salt to taste
1 T Asian chili sauce or red pepper oil
One bunch green onions-finely sliced...should be 6-8 onions)
4 T cilantro, chopped.
One pkg fresh Chinese egg noodles (about 14 oz)

You can use a variety of vegetables, meats, or seafood in this salad. I adore it with grilled vegetables like eggplant, asparagus, peppers & yellow squash, but blanched vegetables work very well too, like julienne carrots, bean sprouts, snow peas (slivered), cabbage and broccoli. I like to toss in some raw slices of mushroom, radish & cherry tomatoes. It's a great salad for using up leftover meats, or I like to quickly poach a couple handfuls of shrimp. Really, you can just have fun.

Anyway, in the morning, you cook the noodles, toss them in half the dressing and put them in the fridge.

Then, just before dinner, you toss in all your vegetables & meats, and then add the rest of the dressing to taste. Generally, I've put so much stuff in the salad that I just use it all. Serve it cold or room temp, and it should serve 4 as a main dish or 6 as a side.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

I got this recipe from a local newspaper. I probably will saute the carrots a little bit too instead of adding it at the end.

Couscous with Zucchini and Almonds

3 small zucchinis, sliced
1 small brown or yellow onion, sliced
1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon curry powder
1 teaspoon canola oil
3 cups low-sodium vegetable stock
2 cups whole-wheat couscous, uncooked
1 teaspoon Mrs.Dash
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped carrots
2 Tablespoons parsley, chopped
6 green onions, sliced
3 Tablespoons sliced, toasted almonds

Yields 10 servings.

Saute zucchini, brown onion and curry powder in canola oil for a few minutes. Add stock and bring to a boil; add coucous, Mrs.Dash and salt.

Turn off heat.

Cover and let stand 5 to 10 minutes. Add carrots, parsley, green onions, and almonds. Fluff gently to combine and serve.

Nutritional analysis per serving:

212 calories
9 g protein
41 g carbs
2.4 g fat
0 mg cholesterol
7.3 g fibre
2 g sugar
113 mg sodium


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

What are Chinese Egg Noodles??? Not the stuff they give you in the bag with your take out order???


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Rachelellen, I made the Asian Noodle Salad today and it is delicious! I've eaten this type of sesame noodle salad, but this is the best - I think it is the sauce. I added green peas, thin sliced celery, and diced cucumber to the salad with the green onions. I used 3 pkgs. of the ramen noodles as I had them on hand and only about half the sauce. I'll keep the sauce refrigerated and make up another batch later this week.

Thanks for a great recipe!
Teresa


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

When it's too hot to cook... even on the grill... I like to stop at the grocery and buy:
one of their pre-roasted chickens from the deli,
a bag of mixed lettuce greens,
a loaf of French bread.

Easy and no cooking.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

eileenl wrote: What are Chinese Egg Noodles??? Not the stuff they give you in the bag with your take out order???

Jeez, what do they give you in the bag with your take out order? I feel deprived, I don't get any noodles in my bag unless I order them! :D The Chinese actually have many, many types of noodles. I looked up a photo link and have posted it below.

However, if you don't have any of these available, use Top Ramen like Teresa did, it'll work just fine. You could even get away with using spaghetti noodles or something I suppose, but unless you live somewhere really in the back of beyond, the Asian section in your supermarket should at least have some dried noodles.

Teresa, I'm glad you liked it. It's one of my favorite recipes because it is so forgiving and adaptable. If you've got the dressing, and some noodles, there's always something in the fridge to toss in with them!:D

Here is a link that might be useful: Chinese egg noodles


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Here are some from a collection I keep of light summery recipes:

Creamy New Potato Salad with Whole Grain Mustard and Chives

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: around 12 minutes
Serves: 8

2 lbs small new red potatoes, halved or quartered
1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 to 1/3 cup whole grain Dijon mustard
2 TBSP white wine vinegar
1/4 cup snipped fresh chives, plus a bit more for top sprinkles
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. Gently boil potatoes in lightly salted water until tender,

2. Meanwhile, combine mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar and chives in a salad bowl.

3. When potatoes are cooked, drain them well and put into the salad bowl while still hot.

4. Season with salt and pepper and then toss them into the mayonnaise mixture.

5. Cool to room temperature, cover and refrigerate. Adjust seasoning when ready to serve and transfer to a
more decorative bowl and sprinkle with a few shopped chives.

Source: Eric Akis
Victoria Times Colonist

Russian Salad - Ensaladilla Rusa

4 servings as a side dish, or 6 servings for a good sized tapa.

Four or more servings:

1 1/2 lbs (640 grams) potatoes
3/4 cup (100 grams) cooked peas - (I used frozen steamed)
1 tin tuna steak drained - 1/2 lb tin (225 grams)
1 small jar green pitted olives - I bought them stuffed with pimento
1 small roasted red pepper, cored, peeled and cut into strips (I used them from a jar)
2 boiled eggs
2 TBS mayonnaise (I used 3 heaping)
1 TBS mayonnaise thinned with a little milk
Salt
My option: a dusting of paprika over all

1) Boil the potatoes in their skins until tender. Drain and cool. When cool peel and dice into a large bowl.

2) Add the cooked peas, the olives cut in halves (save a few whole ones for the garnish), the tuna flaked and one of the chopped eggs. Add salt to taste and then combine with the 2 (or 3) TBS mayonnaise

3) Spread the mixture on a platter forming a mound. Cover it completely with the thinned mayonnaise. A large serving spoon helps to coax it into shape.

4) Decorate with the strips of pepper, olives and the rest of the eggs.

5) It will keep in the fridge for a few days, improving with taste.

6) Serve with crusty bread.

My notes:
You may want to add some more tang to the mayonnaise. If you're a Miracle Whip fan, you may want to use that, or otherwise add a few drops of lemon.

GARBANZO SALAD (4 - 6 servings)

3 medium potatoes diced
handful of green beans, trimmed and halved
1 - 15oz jar garbanzos (chickpeas) in liquid
3 hardcooked eggs, quartered
1 tin white tuna, drained and flaked
1 small red onion sliced into semicircles
2 cups mixed baby salad greens
1 small red bell pepper, sliced
1/2 English cucumber, peeled into stripes, cut to bit-sized chunks
2 medium-sized ripe tomatoes, quartered
1/4 cup grated carrot (optional)
flatleaf parsley, chopped and more for garnish
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teasp seasalt
1/4 cup olive oil
fresh ground black pepper

1. Steam diced potatoes together with green beans until tender but not over-cooked

2. Drain garbanzos and reserve liquid

3. Combine tuna, greens, onion, potato, beans, cucumber, red pepper, garbanzos, (optional carrot) and eggs in salad bowl.

4. In mortar, grind salt together with chopped parsley and garlic. Add olive oil and half the liquid from the jar of garbanzos, stir with spoon until well mixed. Spoon mixture over the salad. Grind the pepper over all and gently turn the mixture with two large spoons. If it looks dry, add the rest of the garbanzo liquid. The eggs will break up and mix with the rest of the salad.

5. Arrange tomato wedges on top of the salad, and garnish with a few more pieces of parsley.


GAZPACHO ANDALUZ (Spanish Cold Summer Soup) - Serves 6

2 thick slices bread (75 g) 2 1/2 oz
1 kilo (2 lbs) ripe tomatoes (4 large)
3 cloves garlic
2 teasp salt
1/4 teasp ground cumin
5 TBS (70 ml) olive oil
5 TBS (70 ml) wine vinegar
2 cups (1/2 liter) water approx.
1 green bell pepper (I added red as well)
1 cucumber
1 onion
1 small tomato
2 sliced toasted bread, cubed into small croutons
1 hard-cooked egg, chopped into small pieces

1. Remove crust from first two bread slices and soak in water (not from the 2 cups water) to cover for 15 minutes.

2. Squeeze out the excess water from the bread and put it in the blender with the tomatoes, garlic, salt and cumin. Process until pured (process in two or more batches if necessary).

3. With the motor running, add the oil in a slow stream. then add the vinegar. The mixture will thicken and change colour as the oil emulsifies. Add a little of the water and sieve the mixture.

4. Transfer to a tureen and stir in the water. Chill until serving time.

5. Chop the green (& red) pepper, cucumber, onion and tomato. Either add them to the chilled gazpacho or serve along with the croutons and chopped egg in small bowls to accompany it and let everyone help themself.

Source: 'The Best of Spanish Cooking'
Janet Mendel

KIDNEY BEAN TABBOULEH - serves 6

3/4 cup (150 grams) bulgur wheat
1 teasp sea salt
1 x 14oz (400 grams) tin of red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
4 plum tomatoes, chopped
3 spring onions, chopped
small handful of chopped parsley, (leaves only)
small handful fresh basil leaves, chopped
4 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
2 TBSP lemon juice
1/4 teasp freshly ground black pepper
lettuce leaves and lemon wedges for garnish

1. Combine bulgar and salt in a large metal pot.
Stir in 2 1/4 cups (500 ml) of boiling water and let sit for 15 - 20 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed and bulgar is tender.
Fluff with fork.

2. Mix the chopped tomatoes, beans, onion and greens into the bulgar, drizzle over the lemon juice and olive oil, add the pepper and mix well.
Adjust seasoning if needed.

3. Place lettuce leaves on a platter, pile the mixture onto the lettuce and use lemon wedges for garnish.

Mint, coriander, or chopped cucumber could also be added in place of parsley.

Source: Adapted from Rick Gallop's GI Diet Green-Light Cookbook

MARACUYA ICE CREAM TOPPING: (Passion Fruit)
****************************
1 cup passion fruit pulp
1 lemon - using peel and juice
1/2 cup sugar (3.5 oz)
1/2 cup (20 cl) water

1) Put all peel of lemon together with sugar and water in small saucepan. Bring to boil and boil 10 minutes.

2) Let cool. Then add pulp and juice of lemon. Mix well.

3) Serve over ice cream.

Rainbow Tomato Salad with Balsamic Shaved Parmesan

Preparation time: 15 minutes
No Cooking
Serves: 8

3 medium ripe red tomatoes, sliced
3 medium ripe yellow tomatoes, sliced
3 medium ripe orange tomatoes, sliced
16 to 20 small basil leaves
coarse sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
100 grams piece parmesan, thinly shaved (you can use a vegetable peeler for this)
extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar

Preparation:

1. Arrange the tomato slices, slightly overlapping them, on a large platter interspersing the basil leaves among the tomatoes.

2. Cover and store at a cool room temperature until ready to serve. At serving time, sprinkle with salt, pepper and parmesan. Drizzle lightly with oil and balsamic vinegar.

3. Let stand 10 minutes to allow flavours to mingle before serving.

Source: Eric Akis
Victoria Times Colonist

Crpes Grand Marnier Flamb with Vanilla Ice Cream and Raspberry Sauce

Recipe for Raspberry Sauce:
---------------------------------

Ingredients:

12 ounces frozen unsweetened raspberries (about 2 cups)
1/4 cup sugar, or more to taste
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

To make:
Let raspberries stand for 30 minutes at room temperature until partially thawed (semi-frozen puree is easier to press through a sieve). Puree in a blender or food processor with sugar and lemon juice. Pass puree through a fine sieve set over a bowl.
Makes about 1 cup.

Per tablespoon: 22 calories, 0 g total fat (0 g sat, 0 g mono); 0 mg cholesterol; 5 g carbohydrate; 0 g protein; 1 g fiber; 0 mg sodium.

Source: Eating Well

Rhubarb & Orange Compote

Ingredients for 2 servings:

2 1/4 cups of rhubarb cut in 1 inch pieces
1 orange
2 teasp grated orange peel, plus a few thin slices for decorating
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup water

1) Peel orange and remove all white pith. Section into quarters then slice each quarter crosswise into 6 fan-shaped pieces.
2) Put rhubarb and orange in saucepan with orange pieces, grated orange peel, sugar and water.
3) Cook without lid until mixture is reduced, about 15 minutes. Remove from stove and cool.
4) Refrigerate until icy cold and serve decorated with a few julienne slices of peel.

Makes a great breakfast dish, tangy and refreshing.


SALMON, ASPARAGUS AND FETA SALAD

Serves 4 - 6

9 ounces (250 grams) salmon fillet, skinned
5 TBS extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
9 ounces (250 grams) asparagus (about 16 medium spears), ends trimmed
9 ounces (250 grams) new potatoes, if possible red skinned, cooked and quartered
(approx 14 small potatoes see photo)
1 lb (450 grams) cherry tomatoes, cut in half
3/4 cup (4 oz or 125 grams) crumbled reduced-fat feta cheese
6 spring onions, chopped
4 TBS fresh mint, chopped
3 TBS fresh basil, chopped
3 TBS fresh dill, chopped
10 ounces (300 grams) mixed salad leaves or baby spinach (about 2 small bags)
3 TBS lemon juice
1 tsp lemon zest
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper

1. Brush the salmon with 1 TBS olive oil and sprinkle with the salt and pepper.
Place salmon on an oiled grill over medium-high heat and cook, turning once, about 4 minutes per side, or until the fish is opaque and flakes easily. Remove and set aside on a plate to cool.

If preferred, bake salmon in oven at 425F (218C) for about 10 to 12 minutes until it is opaque.

2. Slice asparagus spears diagonally into 1-inch (2.5 cm pieces) and cook in a steam basket placed
over a frying pan or pot of boiling water until spears are tender, about 5 minutes.
Then rinse them under cool water and set aside.

3. Prepare the vinaigrette by whisking together the remaining 4 TBS of olive oil, lemon juice, zest, salt and pepper. Toss the salad leaves with half the dressing and arrange on a large platter.

4. Once salmon has cooled, break it up into bite-sized pieces and place it in a large bowl, adding the
potatoes, tomatoes, asparagus, feta, spring onions and fresh herbs. Add the remaining dressing
and toss gently. Spoon this mixture over the salad greens and serve.

Source: Adapted from Rick Gallops Glycemic Index Diet Green-Light Cookbook

SHRIMP SALAD WITH PINK GRAPEFRUIT
Serving Size: 4

Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ ------------------------
1 lg French lettuce
16 lg Jumbo Shrimp
2 lg Pink Grapefruit

For dressing:
1/4 c Orange juice
1/8 c Vinegar
1/4 c Olive oil
1/8 c Corn oil
1/4 c Green olives chopped
1/4 c Onion chopped
1/4 c Parsley chopped
1 t Cayenne pepper
1 t Paprika (Spanish pimenton)
Salt and pepper

Cook the shrimps as usual, peel them. Peel the
grapefruit and separate each piece, also peel the
white skin, being careful to get the complete pieces.
Prepare the dressing by mixing all the ingredients.

To serve: put the lettuce leaves on the dish, adorn with the grapefruit and shrimp.

Put the dressing on top and serve.

This salad will be better if the dressing can be prepared two hours before.

Exported from MasterCook
Patricia Wriedt.

Simple Salmon & Lettuce Salad

1/2 head lettuce : romaine or a crisp iceberg is even better
8 oz (about 213 grams) tin of pink salmon - reserve juice
Heinz English salad cream - this is best but if not available use your favourite light mayonnaise
ground black pepper
chives & flatleaf parsley for sprinkling on top
dash of paprika (optional)

1) Tear lettuce into small pieces over a salad bowl. Flake in the salmon, reserving the juice from the tin.

2) Mix a few drops of salmon juice together with some salad cream in a small dish, stir and add to lettuce and salmon, mixing enough to coat to your taste, grinding pepper in as well.

3) Add some chopped parsley and top with more parsley and a few chives.

Note: You may want to add the rest of the salmon liquid from the tin to the salad to make it even more juicy. I always do. Be sure the lettuce is nice and crispy.

Tuscan Salmon - Makes 4 servings.

1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
4 (6-ounce) salmon steaks or fillets
2 teaspoons honey
3 teaspoons olive oil, divided
8 cups spinach leaves
1/2 teaspoon minced peeled garlic
2 cups red seedless grapes, halved
1/2 cup dry red wine

1. Combine salt, mustard, thyme and pepper; mix well. Rub salmon fillets with honey and sprinkle with half the seasoning mixture.
2. Heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil in a nonstick skillet. brown both sides of salmon fillets. Toss spinach and garlic with remaining 1 teaspoon oil in a 13x9x2-inch baking dish. Place salmon on spinach, cover loosely with aluminum foil and bake at 300F for 10 minutes.
3. Saut grapes in skillet used to brown salmon. Add wine bring to a boil, season to taste with remaining seasoning mixture; reduce by half. Serve salmon on spinach; top with grape sauce.

Served on a bed of spinach and spiced with garlic, thyme and mustard, this dish is a culinary and nutritional treasure.

Recipe Source: California Table Grape Commission

SharonCb


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Thanks so much for all the fantastic ideas! I made the Asian noodle salad too and everyone enjoyed it. We are still expecting brutal heat for the next couple of days so I will be trying more recipes tonight and tomorrow.....

Great ideas everyone! Thanks!

Alexa


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

One of my all-time favorite hot summer meals is a good, flavorful ripe tomato (have to grow it or buy it from a farm stand).

Cut the top off cone shaped, scoop out the worst of the seeds and gel, then fill it with curried chicken salad.

Chill mind-numbingly cold and serve on a bed of baby greens with a nice crusty bread and cheese.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

I'm glad you liked the noodle salad.

In this kind of weather (we're getting some heat too, supposed to be in the low to mid 90s all week. Not as bad as it gets, but bad enough not to want to cook indoors. My wonderful husband degreased the barbecue yesterday and checked and serviced the misting system he put up for me out back so that it's actually more pleasant to be in the back yard cooking on the BBQ than it is to cook inside! Those misters are absolutely wonderful, I can heartily recommend them to anyone who lives where heat is an issue.

Anyhow, when heat like this hits, I start going into major salad/cold veggie mode. It isn't unusual for me to make a salad selection for dinner.

Israeli Salad is a favorite, easy, fresh tasting, and it goes with anything.

Chop equal amounts of cucumbers & tomatoes in about a 1/4 inch dice. Add your choice of other veggies...sweet onions, bell pepper, radishes, frozen corn kernels or peas, apples, pears (crisp varieties), melon, jicama, etc..you get the idea. I prefer to limit it to 4 items, so that each flavor can stand on it's own, without being too confused.

Finely chop herbs of your choice. I like parsley, or mint, and sometimes one of the mint cousins like marjoram. Sometimes I use chives.

Mix a dressing of extra virgin olive oil, salt and fresh lemon juice, in the proportions you favor. I like to use 2 parts of lemon juice to 1 part oil as I like the tart flavor, and tend to go easy on the salt as people can always add it at table. I love this with Meyer lemons, as the juice is on the sweet side, but you can use the more acidic varieties if that's what you have, though you may want to add a bit of sugar.

Anyway, toss it all together and let it sit to "moogle" for at least 15 minutes before serving.

Another favorite is a Marinated Mushroom Salad. Make these in the morning, so they can chill in the fridge all day and let the flavors "moogle".

Mince a small onion and several cloves of garlic. Saute them in a couple of T of olive oil until they soften and the room smells wonderfully of garlic & onion. Then sizzle a half a cup of white wine (not sweet) for half a minute or so and add a T of tomato paste, 1/2 c of water (or, if you've got some really, really good garden tomatoes, sub a small minced tomato sans seeds and reduce the water to 1/4 c), a pinch of ground cloves or nutmeg, and if you're feeling wealthy, a pinch of saffron strands. Cover, and simmer the mixture for half an hour or so. If the mixture gets too dry, you can add a bit more water, but what you're shooting for is a pasty sort of sauce, and remember that the mushrooms will add water when you cook them.

Clean, trim & dry about 1/2 pound of button mushrooms. I like to use bite sized. Add these to the sauce and simmer for about 5 minutes, until cooked through. Remember though, that the residual heat will keep cooking them once you take them off the stove, and you don't want them squishy. Salt & Pepper the sauce to taste, cool to room temp and put into the fridge. Just before serving, sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley, or other fairly mild herb like chives, marjoram or tarragon.

If I made these two, I'd probably also want something a bit heartier and creamy as my third. Like a New Potato, Chicken & Apple Salad

Use leftover chicken or broil/roast chicken parts in the a.m. before it's too hot (I've even used the precooked chicken strips from the market...don't tell anyone). You want about equal parts of chicken & potatoes. I generally make this salad when I have leftover pan roasted new potatoes from the night before, but otherwise I make them (like the chicken) in the a.m.

Melt 4 T of butter in a heavy bottomed sauce pan over a med-high heat & add 1-2 lbs small red potatoes, and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Cover the pot and shake it around so the potatoes are coated with butter, and reduce the heat. Simmer the potatoes for about 20 minutes (depending on their size), then let them sit off the heat, still covered for another 5 minutes. This sort of "sets" them somehow. If you aren't sure after the 20 minutes, test one with a trussing skewer or other very thin, piercing instrument. They should be easy to pierce through, but not quite ready to eat, as they'll still cook more.

Toss the potatoes with 2 or 3 T of minced fresh herbs of your choice. I like chives & marjoram with a tiny bit of rosemary.

Chop a large, crisp apple into thick matchsticks and put into a bowl of salted water to prevent browning.

Now, cut the cooled potatoes into halves if they're small, quarters if they're larger, and chop the chicken meat into pieces slightly smaller than the potatoes.

Toss the potatoes, chicken & apples with your favorite creamy dressing, and garnish with your choice of chopped green onions, toasted, coarsely chopped cashews, chopped dried fruit of some kind or shelled pistachios.

My favorite dressing for this is a sort of variation on Thousand I guess, that my mother used to make:

Mom's Dressing
2 c mayo
1/2 c ketchup
1/4 c Worcestershire
1 T grated garlic
2 t lemon juice
1/2 t black pepper
1/2 t powdered onion
1 T honey
1 t each dried savory, parsley, & basil

Mix all ingredients well. It should sit for at least a couple of hours in the fridge so the garlic won't be "hot" and the flavors of the dried herbs can develop, but if it can sit for longer, like all day, it's better.


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Oops, forgot to add...

Oops, forgot to add...if you want the Israeli Salad can be made more substantial by adding shrimp!


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Soooo many good ideas here!

Wow it is so hot here. I can't stand it. I'd rather have a good whopping snowstorm than this.

I have been having sliced fresh mozzerella with grape tomatoes (cut in half) on a nice crunchy roll. I drizzle the roll with balsamic vinegar. I really enjoy that. It's even better with pesto, but the calorie content goes waaay up.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Rachel, I noticed there was an error in my recipe - it should be 1/2 pound olives instead of "12 pound olives". You could probably figure that out. My recipe is based on sandwiches I had in New Orleans - I've never had Trader Joe's relish. It's traditional in NO to make the sandwich with Mortadella, but I leave that out. I should make some of that relish today. Here's another good Muffuletta recipe, complete with a recipe for the bread.

I think I'll make Sharon's Tuscan salmon tonight, but I'll omit the honey and grapes. I really don't like anything sweet with fish, but the spinach sounds like a great idea, and I have some in the fridge, as well as all the other ingredients. (I especially hate tartar sauce made with sweet pickles.)

Here's my revised Muffaletta recipe:

Muffuletta Salad
1/2 stalk celery, sliced (pickled or fresh)
1/4 cup pickled carrot (I often omit this)
4 pepperoncini, drained and seeded, with stem removed
3 cloves fresh garlic, peeled and cut into pieces
1 tbsp celery seeds
2 tbsp fresh oregano
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 pound large Greek black olives
8 cocktail onions, drained (optional can substitute a green onion, if desired)
12 large pimento stuffed green olives, well drained
3 pieces pickled cauliflower, drained and sliced
1 tbsp small capers, drained
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tbsp grape seed oil

Combine celery, carrot, pepperoncini, garlic, celery seeds, oregano, and black pepper in a small food processor and process until finely chopped. Add the olives, onions, cauliflower, and capers and pulse until those are coarsely chopped. Remove to a storage bowl, and stir in the oils, making sure there is enough oil to cover the mixture. Store tightly covered in refrigerator. Allow to marinate for at least 2 hours before using.

Use as a relish for Muffuletta Sandwich.

For the sandwich:
1 round loaf Italian bread
1/4 pound mortadella, thinly sliced
1/4 pound ham, thinly sliced
1/4 pound hard Genoa salami, thinly sliced
1/4 pound Mozzarella cheese, sliced
1/4 pound Provolone cheese,sliced
1 cup olive salad with oil
Split a muffuletta loaf or a loaf of Italian bread horizontally. Spread each half with equal parts of olive salad and oil. Place meats and cheeses evenly on bottom half and cover with top half of bread. Cut in quarters.

Lars


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Fresh Summer Tomato Sauce Over Angel Hair Pasta

Serves 2

8 cloves of garlic, smashed
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 large ripe summer tomatoes, peeled and seeded
1/2 cup chopped basil leaves
1/4 cup chopped scallions
1/4 tsp. kosher salt, or to taste
Fresh ground pepper, to taste
Fresh grated Parmesan, for garnish
Angel Hair pasta for two people (cooked)
.
Place the smashed garlic into 3 tablespoons of the oil and saute for a few minutes until the oil tastes of garlic. Do not brown. Remove the garlic from the oil and discard.
Dice the tomatoes and combine with 1 tablespoon of the oil. Add basil, scallions, salt and pepper. Pour garlic oil over the cooked spaghetti, mix well, then pour the tomato mixture over the spaghetti. Top with Parmesan and serve.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Well, after making pasta for dinner last night I decided pasta is NOT the thing to make for dinner. That big ol' pot of boiling water heated up the kitchen, and I had the AC running full blast. Plus I didn't want the hot pasta. Note to self--if you make a pasta or potato salad, do it in the AM and serve cold for dinner, lol!

I may make stir fry this week though. I can use instant brown rice which doesn't take more than 10 min. to heat up. I got a whole bunch of cut up veggies from a reception crudite tray today.

It's ridiculous to have the heat this much in June. Save it for July when the tomatoes, squash and peppers will appreciate it. Now all the spring veggies are bolting and the strawberries are boiling!!


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Lars, you know it's funny...I read it as 1/2 pound, and didn't notice the lack of a slash until I read your post just now. I guess my subconscious just wouldn't countenance the idea of 12 pounds of olives! :D

When I was a teenager, I moved in with a Chinese family for 6 months. Ma Yee was adamantly against iced drinks. She insisted that hot liquids were better when it came to cooling you off, so the hot tea and hot soup served with every meal weren't altered one bit when the weather turned warm.

I guess the idea is that drinking something very hot makes you sweat, which helps along your natural cooling system....sweat. So, we'd all sit around the dinner table drinking boiling winter melon, pork & watercress or chicken & tomatoes in broth soup,wash it down with hot tea and sweat our patooties off.

Frankly, I don't know if I was any cooler than I would have been drinking iced tea and starting with a chilled salad, but I doubt I was really any hotter.

Anyhow, in the interest of experimentation, and in homage to the fresh, garden tomatoes we are all looking forward to, I will offer this recipe...I have been craving it lately. I may have posted this before in some thread or other, I can't remember. But it's a wonderful soup, and doesn't require long simmering, so it can be made in the morning before it's too hot, and then briefly reheated for dinner.

Spicy Tomato-Vegetable Soup with Quinoa

2 T extra virgin olive oil
One large onion
3 Celery stalks
1 Medium carrot
1 1/2 C Cabbage
2-4 Garlic cloves
1 14.5 oz can tomatoes, with juice
1 lb. fresh tomatoes
5 14.5 oz cans chicken stock OR the equivalent amount of home made chicken stock or chicken stock made from store bought chicken base, not bouillon.
1 can water
1 serrano pepper, sliced in half the long way
2 t dried leaf oregano
1/4 dried leaf thyme
1 T dried leaf basil
1/4 t black pepper
1/2 C Quinoa*
Thinly sliced green onions for garnish.

Dice all vegetables into 1/4 inch pieces...if you use pre-diced canned tomatoes, they will likely need to be cut smaller as well. Heat a heavy-bottomed, 6 Qt saucepan over a medium-high heat. Add the olive oil, and when it becomes fragrant, add the onions, celery and carrot. Saute until the onion becomes translucent, then add the rest of the ingredients except for the Cabbage and Quinoa. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Bring 2 quarts of water to boil in another pan, and add the Quinoa. Return to a boil, then reduce the heat just enough to prevent it boiling over. Boil the Quinoa for 10 minutes, then drain and rinse in a fine mesh sieve. Add the Quinoa to the soup and simmer another 15 minutes. Add cabbage, bring soup to a slow boil for 5 minutes and turn off heat. At this point, the soup can be served, but the flavor will improve greatly if the soup is allowed to sit at least until it is cool before reheating to serve, and if it sits for several hours or overnight, all the better! Remove the serrano chili halves before serving and sprinkle soup with sliced green onions for garnish.

Yield: Appx. 14, one-cup servings

*If you cannot find Quinoa at the grocery store, it can often be purchased in health food stores. Rice may be substituted, but the flavor and texture will be different.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

All those recipes are excellent ideas for hot weather meals. Thanks a lot. Salads and sandwiches are the meals of choice but after a while, one wants a "regular" cooked meal. Sometimes we just cook in a crock pot or kitchen kettle in the patio or garage to keep the house cool. It doesn't need watching, so to speak, and you can use your favorite recipes. My sis has a roaster that she uses in the garage to make any number of meals w/o heating up her house. Sometimes it gets so hot around here, we don't need electricity to cook food, LOL.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Alexa, some great sounding recipes and ideas have been shared here already. I'm saving some for myself too. A couple of things that can hang out on the grill with out much watching are Beer Can Chicken and pork loin. You may have to check them every now and then but don't have to watch them all of the time.

If I remember you have a smoker??? A smoked turkey is wonderful and requires very little attention. You may have to add some charcoal once half way through and that's it. Same goes for a pork roast/ Boston Butt. Both would give you a couple of meals for sure.

If you can stand to boil a pot of water potatoe and pasta salad are great sides along with coleslaw. Dessert, ice cream, sorbets, and fresh fruit with or without a dip are always big hits with my group.

Looks like this front is FINALLY on the move so I think you should be cooling of in a day or two. Crazy, crazy weather this last year.

David


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Rachel, the sweating theory works when it refers to spicy foods, such as Thai chili peppers. People in hot climates eat chilies because they actually do help to cool them off. Hot tea is a different story, and you won't find anyone in Texas drinking anything other than iced tea in the summer (or winter for that matter). Eating ice cream is supposed to help keep you warm in the winter because of the calories, and so it might not help much in the summer. However, cold liquids will help cool you down and hot liquids will help warm you up. Alcohol will also lower your body temperature rather than warm you up, despite what the Alpine St. Bernards will tell you.

I solved the problem by moving to a mild climate where extremes in temperatures are rare. However, even though it has only been in the 60s today, the house was in the upper 70s until I opened the windows for an ocean breeze. For some reason, flies seem to find their way through my screens, which is why I had kept the windows closed. I don't know how they do it - I can't see any holes in the screens. I did get rid of the flies, however, mostly by swatting them.

Lars


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

It only takes 3 minutes to cook the angelhair pasta so it doesn't heat the kitchen up too much.

Beverly


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Rachel, your Mom's dressing is delicious. I made it tonight for lettuce, onion, parmesan and tomatoe salad.

Thank you for the recipe!

It has been hot here, we were under 100 degrees today, but we have been over 100 and windy for the past few weeks. It has just been terrible.

Tonight I fixed grilled shrimp, grilled vegetables, wild rice and salad.

We are in wheat harvest and this is the first night that I have fixed supper at home because it rained last night.

Kind of nice to have dinner at home, and thankful for the rain, but sorry to stop wheat harvest for a day or so.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Glad you enjoyed Mom's dressing, Trixie. Now, finally I know someone to ask...I've always wondered just why it is that harvesting grain, hay, etc., must stop when it rains. It's one of those things I've always read in books involving farms, but wondered why.

I mean, it seems to make sense that if you bundle up wet hay, it might rot, but then around here, one sees bundles of hay sitting out in all sorts of weather once it's harvested.

Then, I've read in books about times gone by that folks would rush to get the hay/grain in before a storm hit, the unspoken (or unwritten as the case may be) bit being that somehow, what wasn't harvested before the storm was lost. Doesn't it dry out?

Might be silly questions, but I've always wondered.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

My understanding on the harvesting of hay (please correct me if I am wrong) is that when hay is cut it must dry for several days. Once it is dry and the threat of mold is gone it can be rolled into the huge bundles and the outer layer becomes almost like a thatched roof. The outer layer is removed before it is used for fodder. When hay is baled (tied into 80 lb rectangles) it must be protected from the weather or it will mold.

Last night was so brutally hot that I gave up on any idea of cooking. I bought a pound of cocktail shrimp and served that with a crusty bread with dipping oil and marinated veggies and a wedge of cheese. The tomato issue is adding to the problems of dinner - I bought some pre-made tomato bruscetta and when I went to serve it, it occured to me that it may have been made with the problematic tomatoes. Needless to say I am tossing it rather than take a chance.

David - I can't even face the idea of messing with the smoker right now. It is THAT hot and there is no shade whatsoever where my smoker is.... just going out to add charcoal or wood chips is enough to make me cry. I will make potato salad this morning though, that does sound good.

The weather is so hot they are closing schools all over this area today. Many of them do not have AC and the temp inside my kids elementary school was 98 yesterday and kids were having bad physical reactions to the heat. Now if we can only talk the PWB into opening the pool. It is usually only open on weekends until school gets out.

Hang in there everyone, it can't stay this hot all summer.... can it?

Alexa


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Alexa, this heat happens a lot around here at exactly this time in June.
I remember the days exactly because this was when "Fun Day" was held when my kids were in grade school. Around June 7th, 8th, or 9th, all the kids would have to spend the day racing around the track in various "fun" competitive events. The idiots didn't even realize that heat prostration is a medical emergency. Kids would collapse and not be taken to the hospital as they should have been.
So no, this heat is not at all unusual, and yes, it will pass!


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

It's supposed to be between 85 & 98 for the next couple of weeks around here, which is a bit warmer than normal for June, but not really all that unusual. From July-September, temps from the eighties to the hundreds are to be expected. Having spent most of my life in the San Francisco Bay Area, within 5 miles of the water, you can imagine my chagrin the first time I realized that I was relieved when the temp dropped into the low eighties one week in August.
sweating

By the way, I've just discovered that frozen cherries make a wonderful snack. They're also easier to pit when frozen, they don't squirt juice everywhere.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Linda & Sharon, thanks for the gazpacho recipes. That sounds perfect to keep on hand in the fridge for a quick snack on sultry days. I had some at a local tapas restaurant last week and have been dying to make it myself.

Sharon, do you usually end up using the full 2 cups of water? Does it dilute the flavor a lot? I really like the bread addition. I bet it contributes to a smooth, more emulsified texture.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

It's hot and humid here- 98 today- but still it's cool inside.
The heat doesn't overly effected my cooking much except I don't make winter foods like lasagna or beef stew.
We do eat a lot of salads but I think that has more to do with the abundance of fresh produce than anything else.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Shambo yes I use the full two cups of water as this is a liquid soup and as the recipe says it's for 6 servings it certainly isn't much liquid for that number of servings. It doesn't dilute the flavour and yes the soaked bread gives it more density.
I do love gazpacho and this is a typical recipe.

Here's a little video (in Spanish) in which the cook pours in very little water but note that the extra water comes from the bread which he soaked and didn't squeeze out. So there's more water in his recipe than appears.

Here's a second video (also in Spanish) where there is no bread added but the woman adds 3/4 a liter (3 cups) of water but no bread.

The bread is really a traditional part of the recipe and gives it more body.

SharonCb

Here is a link that might be useful: Spanish Video - Making Gazpacho


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Oooh, gazpacho! If ony I had fresh tomatoes on hand. And a mufuletta is definitely a meal in sandwich form. I've made the exact recipe that Lars links to as dinner for our family of 3. 1 sandwich. 14" in diameter. Heaven on a plate.

When the weather starts to scorch my brain I turn to thoughts of Southeast Asian cuisine. Rice paper wrapped spring rolls & green papaya salad, things like that. But one of my favorite things to make quick & easy is larb. This recipe is from epicurious & is very tasty. I substitute ground turkey for the chicken and will use red leaf lettuce for wrapping. I also drain the meat after it's cooked, prior to adding the "marinade".:

larb chicken salad
Bon Apptit : September 1998

Fragrant lemongrass, chilies and a sweet and tangy sauce flavor this classic Thai appetizer.

Serves 6.

Restaurant; Typhoon, Portland OR


2/3 cup fresh lime juice
1/3 cup fish sauce (nam pla*)
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons Thai roasted chili paste* in oil or chili-garlic sauce*
3/4 cup canned low-salt chicken broth
1 1/2 pounds ground chicken
1 cup thinly sliced green onions
3/4 cup thinly sliced shallots
3 tablespoons minced fresh lemongrass*
1 tablespoon thinly sliced Thai chilies* or serrano chilies
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
1/3 cup chopped fresh mint leaves

2 small heads Boston lettuce, separated into leaves

*Available at Asian markets and some supermarkets nationwide.


Whisk first 4 ingredients in medium bowl to blend; reserve sauce.
Bring broth to simmer in heavy large skillet over medium heat.

Add chicken. Simmer until cooked through, breaking up meat with spoon, about 8 minutes. Add green onions and next 3 ingredients.
Stir until vegetables are tender and most of liquid has evaporated, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in sauce, cilantro and mint. Season with salt and pepper.
Spoon into lettuce leaves; serve.

Stir until vegetables are tender and most of liquid has evaporated, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in sauce, cilantro and mint. Season with salt and pepper.
Spoon into lettuce leaves; serve.


Epicurious.com CondNet, Inc. All rights reserved.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Sharon, I really enjoyed watching the videos. Since I have a craving now and tomatoes aren't really in season yet, do you have a suggestion about possibly substituting good quality canned whole tomatoes?


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Shambo I've never tried making it with canned whole tomatoes but I bet it would work just fine! You may want to try it first with a reduced version of the recipe but I can't think of any reason why it wouldn't taste delicious!

We're so lucky here that the supermarkets have mountains of local tomatoes....all a nice deep red and ready to eat.

SharonCb


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

I have made gazpacho using canned tomatoes often. You may have to add a bit of sugar to cut the acid a bit, but good quality canned tomatoes are well and away better than poor quality, store bought "fresh" tomatoes.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

rachelellen, I am slapping my forehead because I never thought of this! I use canned, whole tomatoes all of the time when good tomatoes aren't available. Gazpacho tonight, for sure.

Nina


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Sharon & Rachel, thanks for the information. I went to the grocery store this AM and picked up all the necessary ingredients including a can of whole tomatoes. I'm going to make the gazpacho later this afternoon when I get back from visiting with my mom. I'm really looking forward to eating it.


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RE: Need cool dinner ideas for hot weather

Rachel, we combine the wheat for the grain. We are docked on price at the elevator if the moisture level is to high, the higher the moisture the more you are docked and if it is to high the elevator won't take it, because if it is to moist it will rot or mold. We cut a sample and check the moisture level before cutting a whole semi load. They tried to cut yesterday, but still to wet, but it's a go today!

We bale our peanut hay in round bales. After the peanuts are harvested and the plant dries out it can be baled. They bale it in the night usually because it has to have a dew on it so it will stick together, does that make sense. We use a digger to dig the peanuts and it goes under the plant and turns the whole plant upside down on top of the ground and it sits on top of the ground to dry a few days before harvesting them because it is the same thing, if the peanuts have to much moisture we have to pay drying on them. Also, if we get a freeze on the dug peanuts they are ruined and peanut harvest is in October and November, so you have to be pretty careful.

Is this clearer than mud, I am not a real good explainer.


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