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10 No-cook meals for hot summer days

If you want a more broth-y ceviche, add clam juice.

Everyone is miserable in this heat.  Luckily, in NYC, we got a break this week and temperatures are (only) in the mid 80’s.  Last week, with temperatures in the high 90’s, many people were scrambling for easy and cool meals.

Though the recipes below aren’t exact, experiment with the ingredients until you find a balanced flavor.  If you have extra, great – save the leftovers for a snack.  Here are some fresh ideas to keep your home and body temperature cool:

  1. Gazpacho with goat cheese and sliced baguette.  Use the bread to dip in the cold soup or to have with the cheese.  Click here for my spicy gazpacho recipe!
  2. Seafood Ceviche with seasonal vegetables.  Combine onions, chilies, fish or shrimp, cilantro, and tomatoes with lemon/lime juice and let it marinate.  The proportions of ingredients aren’t stringent so add as much or as little of each item as you want!  Other potential additions: cucumber, bell peppers, chives, scallions, onions, or garlic.  Let marinate in the lemon or lime juices for at least 1 hour. Or try my summer squash ceviche!
  3. Raw Corn and Hearts of Palm Salad.  Combine raw corn, romaine lettuce, chopped hearts of palm, tomato, avocado, lime juice and olive oil.  Toss with canned hominy to make it a bit richer.
  4. Greek Tapas Platter.  Make a spread with homemade hummus (puree tahini, chickpeas, 1 garlic clove, a dash of lemon juice, salt, pepper, and olive oil) and tzatziki (cucumbers, chopped with low fat yogurt, squeeze of lemon juice, dill, salt and pepper).  Add marinated artichokes, marinated olives, sardines, or smoked trout to the plate.  Serve with pita or whole grain crackers.
  5. Barbecue Chicken Sandwich on Ciabatta.  Using canned chicken or a store bought rotisserie chicken, shred the meat until it’s bite size for a sandwich.  Add any or all of the following items: diced cucumber, thinly sliced red onion, thinly sliced jicama, diced green pepper, or chopped celery.  Finally, toss with homemade BBQ sauce, like this one.
  6. White Bean Spread on a multi grain bread.  In a food process or with an immersion blender, combine white beans, avocado, salt and pepper.  Spread in a thick layer on the bread and add a layer of red cabbage slaw (shredded cabbage, shredded carrots, shredded cucumber, and chopped parsley marinated in white wine vinegar and pepper for 20 minutes).  Add a layer of lettuce or sprouts and another layer of the bean/avocado on the top slice of bread.  Extra sharp cheddar cheese optional.
  7. Cobb Salad Stuffed Tomatoes.  Combine freshly roasted, chopped turkey breast, chopped Boston lettuce, diced avocado, crumbled blue cheese, chopped hard boiled egg (or feel free to leave this out), raw corn, chopped bacon (or turkey bacon).  Add chopped chives, red wine vinegar, Dijon mustard, salt, pepper and a little olive oil until combined.    Scoop the flesh out of the tomatoes, drain it if the tomatoes are very juicy, and add it back into the turkey mixture.  Fill the tomatoes with the mixture and serve.
  8. Chicken Sausage Salad.  On this Waldorf salad spinoff, combine crunchy lettuce (like romaine) with a pre-cooked (and diced) chicken and apple sausage.  Add chopped strawberries, walnuts, oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
  9. Mediterranean Salmon Salad.  Combine drained canned salmon with red leaf lettuce, cucumber red onion, capers, tomatoes, bell pepper, dill, red wine vinegar, olive oil and a dash of cayenne pepper.
  10. Watermelon and Tomato Salad with Basil.  Chop watermelon, tomato feta cheese and basil.  Toss with a little olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper.  Or, check out the full recipe here.

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