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When it's too HOT 
in the kitchen tips for summer cooking |
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Summer makes me lazy. Something about the long days, sweltering heat, and blistering sunshine just saps me of any desire to do – well, anything. My natural inclination is to find a shady outdoor spot, sprawl out on a chaise longue, and avoid any movements that might make me break into an icky sweat. I want to be reading trashy magazines, indulging in non-mentally-taxing novels – not puttering about in my kitchen, wiping beads of perspiration from my brow as my stove or oven turns the room into a veritable sauna. No, when it comes to cooking during these summer months, I find that speedy and simple is the only way to go. It’s just too darned hot in my non-air-conditioned house to be slaving over the stove. The only way to survive the summer months: adopt some alternative methods for getting a good meal on the table …

1 Cold foods do make fine meals.
How many times in your life have you heard the phrase "a good, hot meal"? Why is it that no one ever yearns for a good, cold meal? We tend to think that cold foods – cereal with milk, sandwiches, yogurt – might be fine for breakfast, lunch, or a snack, but for the most part, we expect our dinners to be served piping hot. It’s a silly bias, particularly in summer, when there’s little less appealing than the thought of a steaming hot plate adding to the already sweltering temperatures.

Time to scrap that ridiculous notion that a proper meal must be a hot meal … because when the temperatures are hovering around the triple digits, there’s nothing more satisfying than a refreshingly cold dinner. Think big, crisp salads, full of flavorful summer veggies picked fresh from the garden, or cold pasta and noodles tossed in a vinaigrette or a light soy dressing, both of which make for a filling summer lunch or dinner. For something lighter, try dips such as hummus, baba ghanoush, bean dip or guacamole, scooping them up with raw veggies, pita wedges, tortilla chips, or fresh bread.

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