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12 January 2012

Cold food on hot days

I've been swanning around all summer thinking I live in the perfect climate. We usually have heat and humidity from November onwards but for the past couple of years that hasn't happened, we had a lot of rain instead. This summer has been mild with temperatures around 25 - 28* (77 - 82F) but when Monday dawned all the hot weather hit us at once.  This is a quote from our local weather site,

WOW ! What a scorcher it was on Monday. With a humidity of 46% and a steep fall in barometric pressure the afternoon’s temperature soared to a maximum of 35°C by 3.00pm. The Hear Stress factor recording was 46°C.
(35C = 95F, 46C = 114F)

It was not as hot yesterday but it was still hot. At 2pm I wandered outside to water the plants in my bush house. Almost all of them were heat stressed but came back after a good watering. I cooled down the worm farm too. It's very important to keep an eye on worms during hot weather. They will die if it gets too hot or they'll leave the farm looking for a more comfortable home. When the plants and worms were done, I went back inside and thought about dinner. It was too hot to cook.

 The beginnings of my coleslaw.

What on earth do you cook when it's so hot. No one feels like a big meal and cooking only tends to heat the house up anyway. I had already defrosted a small bag of sausages so I decided to go ahead with them and add a salad. But it got me thinking about summer food. We all have our favourite winter meals of stews, soups and roasts, apart from salads and serving hot food cold - like the leftovers of a roast - I don't have a lot of specialist summer meals. I often make quiche and serve that cold but that has to be cooked in the oven. We also have salad with tinned salmon or tuna and salad with boiled eggs, but not much else.

What are your standbys during a hot summer? I'm guessing the answer to this is to cook in the morning before it gets too hot and then serve that cold from the fridge in the evening. Or do you have something up your sleeve that I haven't even thought of? How do you put a good nutritious meal on the table when it's stinking hot, without heating up the house?

And while I writing about food, let me show you these little beauties Hanno cooked a couple of weeks ago. They're German Kartofflepuffer topped with tomato, onion and cheese. They were absolutely delicious. Definitely not a summer food but maybe if they were served cold with a salad they'd go well.

But let's get back to cold food. When you're going through a hot spell, along with a big jug of cold water and ice cubes, what are your standbys?


  1. I eat a lot of raw veggies and fruits in the summer. I think I ate 3 cucumbers in one day last year. I'm not sure if that qualifies as a complete meal, but it could be worse. Sometimes bagels and toast with cheese and fruit... and we do a lot of wraps. My favorite is a cream cheese and cucumber with dill wrapped in a spinach tortilla. We seldom barbecue- which is a lot of people's answer to the heat, but I get so hot standing over the open flame that I don't want to eat when it's finished. For a treat we make sushi.

  2. We eat a lot of cucumber soup, avocado soup and fresh salads. The soups are to be served cold. Also make a ton of smoothies with apples, ice, and bananas.

    We too have very warm summers. Last year it was often 115F which I think is around 46C.

    Stay cool


  3. Salads whenever possible (my lunch of choice even now - the middle of a London winter). Cous cous is useful for stretching salads, and Howard makes a great potato salad, made extra crunch by adding celery and pumpkin seeds.

    And omlettes - especially veg loaded Spanish omlettes.

  4. I love to make main-dish salads( a green salad topped with grilled meat, a pasta salad, etc). I also tend to grill a lot because at least the cooking heat stays outdoors. I even grill pizza in the summer.

    I'm a little jealous of your warmth right now, since it's cold and rainy here on the East Coast of the U.S. right now!

  5. Rhonda, I have a post about a nice pasta salad with canned salmon, peas and celery with a lemon/mayo dressing. Lots of dill, too.

  6. We do much of our cooking on the outdoor grill in summer here. I usually grill up thick slices of vegetables, such as squash, drizzled with olive oil and salt & pepper, for snacking throughout the day. We also eat salads and a lot of Vietnamese spring rolls when the days are hot. I've read that eating spicy foods help the body cool down (maybe just from sweating, though?) so maybe you need some cold AND spicy foods for these hot days of yours ;)

  7. Also I've often though that the crockpot could be used more often to cook things ahead of time which could be served cool or warm later - and it wouldn't heat up the house as much.

  8. P.S. Boy, do Hanno's Kartofflepuffer look ever so tasty!

  9. Baked veges chopped up and put in the fridge the day before....then tossed in a salad with seeds for a meal the next day. The kids love the sweetness of the veges in the salad.

  10. I had defrosted a chook for Monday! Too hot to put on the oven, so I cooked it in the slow cooker - much cooler and less work for me. Then we packed the chicken and some sides into a container and ate it down at the river and had a swim as well in the cool of the evening. Best way we found to deal with the heat (and eating out without the takeaway or loads of washing up!)

  11. Well, we do have to eat hot food in hot weather - think of the curries in India ! I drink hot tea in the hottest weather, strangely it cools you down.
    The food looks great !

  12. It only got to 31C (88)here but we had pre made hamburgerswith salad on toasted bread. My mum always froze hamburgers, one of my favorite quickie meals.

    Next day was also hot so did a lamb shank hot pot at lunch time. Only takes 5- 6 hrs to cook. Delicious and so easy.

    Potatoes boiled in their jackets split open on plate and topped with cooked up tomatoes,bacon and onion, then a generous dollop of sour cream and grated cheese.Also another hot weather favorite.

    Chris @ Coffs Harbour.

  13. Rhonda, I'm in Brisbane and boy, wasn't it hot this week. What I do is use the bbq outside for cooking meats and serve with a salad. Or my slow cooker for say a bolognese sauce to be served on a microwaved potato and a side salad. Or Greek lamb done with shoulder chops in the slow cooker served in a wrap or with Mediterranean salad ingredients. I have also been venturing into a lot of Asian salads. Their climate is very similar to ours and the ingredients and dressings are just beautiful. Served with fresh fish, cheap seafood or steamed chicken and it's just delicious. I have a lot of recipes on my blog

    Anne xx

  14. Hi Rhonda,
    We have 2 seasons here - dry and wet. We are entering the dry right now.
    My trick: All food that needs to be cooked in an oven is done in the evening as the temperature drops. This means that you are cooking beforehand for the day to come.
    Anything that needs to be heated is then microwaved for the meal.
    I do remember that when we were younger my mother would start cooking very early in the morning (she did not have the freezing capabilities that I now have).
    Our island tricks:
    Basically we use meals that meet 3 requirements: little time in front of a hot stove, a full meal you can make in one pot and heat.
    Assembly meals where just the meat is cooked, like tacos, are a nice easy treat - I just have to cook the meat and beans concoction and everyone is happy to assemble with lettuce/patchoi, pineapple and salsa.
    One-pot dishes like pelau - this dish is so forgiving and easy that we can carry it almost everywhere.
    Curry is a dish that is quick and a good option for vegetarians. Our curries tend to be on the light side and 'chokas' are a popular light dish served with a thin roti.
    Soups or what you may term broths are immensely popular - corn soup, fish broth:
    We, as a people, love our pepper. The hotter the better. It is a popular belief that the heat of it helps you to perspire and thus help your body to cool down faster. This condiment can be seen at every table on the island even pizza joints. And there is always competition as to who makes the hottest pepper sauce :)

    Trinidad & Tobago

  15. I enjoy making a Caesar Salad with added mango on hot days for a complete meal. Other favourites are a Cajun Chicken Salad, Chicken & Zucchini Burgers with a salad, (or in a burger roll with salad). All of these dishes keep the kitchen cool because you can cook the chicken in a frying pan. I also use my slow cooker for baked potatoes and then add coleslaw, bacon, cheese, sour cream or whatever I have on hand as toppings. Fried rice with lots of vegetables and left over meat is a good meal too, once again all done in the frying pan. I also make a Cabbage Salad which can be made into a meal by adding cooked chicken too. Most of these dishes use chicken but we also use the B.B.Q. to cook and keep the heat outside. If you want any of the recipes just let me know and I'll be happy to pass them on to you.

  16. One of my favorite snacks in the summer is baby carrots (or any veggie) with hummus. I love avocado sandwiches and I like to mix my cold salads (ie.tortellini pasta with Greek salad)or sauteed veggies with a fresh salad.

    Can we get Hanno's recipe? They look delicious and since it is winter in my neck of the woods I can give them a try now.


  17. Oh Rhonda, didn't that heat just hit us! I too had been thinking summer was pretty nice this year, it's funny how you forget how debilitating that high humidity is.

    As you suggested, I cook in the early morning and usually make things I can eat cold later with salad, like lentil or nut patties, grains that I can toss into a salad, have a few hard boiled eggs in the fridge, or cooked potatoes that can also make a quick meal. But I do cook too, even when it's hot, usually veggie curries or dahl and rice.I've spent a lot of time in India and those foods are eaten year round. Sometimes I just graze my way around the garden, eating whatever's there...very satisfying.

  18. I like a salad of raw red cabbage and dried raisins, all marinated in some balsamico vinegar, and then topped with walnut oil and some feta or goat cheese.

    I never tried it, but I guess it would work with white cabbage too.

  19. On super hot days we have been known to have fruit salad for tea, over Christmas sliced ham and salad is the go or a BBQ and salad- can't get much simpler IMO

  20. From a frosty night in an English winter, I am reading your summer post with a longing for warm sunshine and a return of the growing season. Your home made coleslaw looks delicious!

    Our food on hotter summer days ( if and when they ever happen in grey old England) is based on salad and fruit. As much of it home grown as possible.

  21. My favourite on a hot night is a watermelon and feta salad- chunks of watermelon, small cubes of feta, a handful of chopped mint, two handfuls of barely-chopped italian parsely, splash of olive oil, juice from a lime. Divine...

  22. Hi rhonda,
    I look to Asian food for summer inspiration. This is one of our favourites.
    Are you going to post Hanno's recipe? It looks delicous.

  23. Hi Rhonda,

    Yesterday it was too hot to even think about food! But girls have to eat so just made a salad wizzed up hummus for one and pesto for the other. Add some pre cooked chats with home-made dressing and mangoes and nectarines for dessert.
    Easy done.
    Vicki xx

  24. We make salads, too. Cous cous and pasta salads being favourites for dinner as they are a bit more substantial. When I am sick of salads I do a "baked" potato in the microwave. Not properly baked of course, but still yummy and keeps the house cool. I like to serve with tuna and rocket and cottage cheese. Eliza

  25. Mexican Mondays!

    Hubby just fries up a little mince and spices, and we have it in wraps with lots of fresh vegies, cheese, sour cream and salsa. Yum!!

    (Best thing is Hubby cooks it all)

    x Beck

  26. We eat fish with salad, bbq meat with bbq veg or salad, bruschetta, pasta with uncooked topping -- fresh tomatoes and parsley etc.

    At the forum in Message 8 of

    has a number of ideas.

  27. It has been hot hasn't it? We do a lot of stir fry's, fajita type wraps and cold leftover roasts. As some of the others have said i also do use the slowcooker a fair bit as you can put it on early in the morning and it doesn't radiate heat.By the time we eat it has usually cooled down a little at least!
    I find it too hot to even BBQ half the time!You are right though, i don't really have any 'usual' summer meals although have many for winter...interesting thoughts Rhonda!

  28. Rhonda my Thai Salad With Chilli Lime Dressing is perfect for this hot humid weather that we are currently experiencing here in QLD. It is filling and satisfying as is although you can add either cold shredded chicken breast (poached is lovely)or bbq/grilled/pan fried med-rare steak thinkly sliced.

    Keep cool!



  29. Cold cereals for breakfast and if it gets really hot, fruits cooled in the refrigerator- esp melon as they have so much water content. Sandwiches- sliced tomato, sometimes with crispy bacon or banana with cheese or ham with lettuce. Couscous salad (Jamie Oliver has a lovely one that requires no cooking), broccoli salad are some of our favorites. If I do cook, it's super early in the morning so I can open all the windows to let the fresh morning air in to cool off the house. My husband likes to BBQ with salads. Or fajitas which do not require prolonged cooking.

  30. I like salads, but I find I get a bit tired of them after a few days, and I miss my cooked veggies, so I find we eat a lot of stir frys in summer, after all the prep is done they only take 10 mins to fry up, and they are done, sure you work over a bit of heat , but it's not for long.

  31. We like hummous, deviled eggs, potato and green bean salad in a mustard and dill vinaigrette with capers, and burritos (but not all together!). I heat the refries for the burritos in the microwave to avoid heating up the kitchen. I bought a Sun Oven at the end of last summer and look forward to experimenting more with it this year.

  32. Hi Rhonda
    We mostly BBQ or meat or fish and have it with a salad and some cold watermelon to finish off. Another hot day standby is just cold meat and salad - ham or leftover roast chicken etc.
    Cooking outside or not cooking at all seems the best way to go.

  33. Rhonda, it's like you threw a party and everybody brought a dish. Lots of good ideas for next summer.

    I've gotten hooked on a Spicy Asian Slaw (pretty much year round). I make up a big bunch to keep in the fridge. Then mix a little mayo and peanut butter in my bowl, and mix in a big serving of the slaw. Yum.

    I won't even turn the oven on in the summer. My big trick is keeping an old microwave cart just outside the back door near an outlet. I can set the crockpot out there to keep the heat outdoors. Or do any kind of baking in the turkey roaster.

    brenda from arkansas

  34. We grill out a lot. Also I make a dish that is rice noodles and whatever leftover meats and veggies I have with soy sauce. Lots of sandwiches and tuna salad too.

  35. Oh yum, I love Kartoffelpuffer but with a big family, it takes rather a long time to cook enough for us all!!
    When we lived in NSW and it was very hot, I'd make fruit smoothies for the evening meal. It doesn't sound very nutritious but when you add loads of superfoods such as hemp oil, chia seeds, whey powder and nuts they are actually quite filling and healthy. And bananas were always cheap back then.....!

  36. We have a lot of salads with cold meat. Tuna salads, pasta salads, couscous salads.... anything that desnt need cooking. And when we get sick of salads we fire up the BBQ. It is one with a big hood, so we can roast things in it, do pizza, have a traditional BBQ, anything really. And the best bit is that although you need your sun hat and sunscreen to cook, it doesn't heat up the house.

  37. Honestly, sometimes it's so hot that my girls and I just have popcorn (covered in nutritional yeast) and yogurt smoothies. It hits the spot, and we are happy to have such a quick and festive meal. My husband, however, isn't satisfied with such a simple dinner. So we only have this when he's working late. =-)

  38. And here in Southern Vic it was unseasonably cool, so I took the opportunity to use up some of the finger eggplants and zucchinis from the garden and make minestrone soup. In the hot weather when we are sick of bbq and salad we make chicken and salad wraps. Baked potatoes (microwaved) are good with whatever toppings you like.


  39. We're in Florida, and as far as I can tell our climate is similar to yours. We do a lot of grilling in the summer, which keeps the heat out of the house. Meat of course, but also veggies--some like zucchini we slice and cook directly on the grill, others that are too small and would fall through the grating can be grilled in a grill basket. Our grill even has a side burner so we can cook other things out there as well if we use a cast iron pan. I like to make pasta salads, which as you said are best done in the morning then left to chill in the fridge until it's time to eat.

    We also use the crockpot, but in an effort to keep the heat out of the house we run it on the porch. If I cook chicken in the crockpot I'll use the leftovers in a chicken salad or a wrap, or as a topping for a green salad, the next day.

    Cooking on the stove isn't so bad if we keep it brief, it's avoiding running the oven that's key for us.

  40. Rhonda - I have ditched my electric kettle and switched off electric stove at the mains and only use a 2 plate gas (camping) stove for heating water in my whistling kettle and cooking. With those two plates, and my solar oven, I seldom have a hot kitchen - and I very rarely get hot and bothered whilst I'm cooking :)

    I have also reduced our electricity consumption by 50% :)

  41. I am looking forward to reading through everyone else's comments for some suggestions - but meatballs (koftas) and tabouli is a favourite here. The other day I tried the lamb and chickpea meatballs out of The Thrifty Kitchen ( I baked them in the oven rather than pan fried to keep me, if not the house, cooler) and they were a delicious summer meal cold.

    My other summer suggestion is jelly for pudding. It slips down beautifully on a hot day.

  42. Hi Rhonda, we do a lot of bbq-ing in summer on hot days, and have a lot of salad based meals that may require a bit of cooking but not using the oven. Chicken poached with aromatics makes a good addition to salad, as does bacon or tuna. If you're prepared, you can always roast some veges like pumpkin and pop it in the fridge the day before the really hot weather hits, and add it to salad with feta, cherry tomatoes, lettuce, olives and some herbs. I generally dont feel like eating things that are too heavy on hot days, so variations on the salad theme is always good!


  43. Our house used to get unbelievably hot in the summer without air. We just had one small unit in the back to make the bedrooms comfortable enough for sleep.

    I would try to take advantage of cool evenings to do any bread type baking. We do a lot of pasta salads in the summer. It goes quickly in the morning and sits in the fridge all afternoon to chill. I prefer light things like this and various veggie salads.

    I often took my cast iron skillets and biscuit pan outside and used the grill like an oven to make roasted potatoes, corn bread, biscuits, casseroles and the like. It takes some paying attention, but isn't hard and goes quickly.

    It's funny to think of heat now. Here in the midwest USA it's been unseasonably warm for winter this week at 40F. =)

  44. Most of the year, I cook mostly on the stovetop, and maybe use the crock pot sometimes. We eat simply now that we are just 2 again. Maybe stir fry and noodles or rice. Maybe black bean chili (we love this anytime). Tacos, burritos, etc. (We are diabetic so have to be careful on the carbs). But probably our favorite is Chinese Chicken Salad made with what is called here Chinese Cabbage or Napa Cabbage. The dressing is one of the best parts. Also love the crunchy fried won tons that go on top. If you do not have the recipe I can send it.
    Elizabeth in NC
    (and YES we get incredibly hot here too and sometimes it rains so hard for so long that water spouts come up out of the grass like fountains as the ground cannot aborb anymore).

  45. I don't think I have any suggestion that hasn't been made, but I'm another envious N hemisphere reader huddled in front of the woodstove... Roll on summer!

  46. 30 degrees c would have me passing out, so I can't imagine what your temperatures are like to cope with.

    We eat a lot of raw veggies and salads in summer with cold meats and potato salad. It's funny how warm temperatures affect our appetites, we are certainly slimmer in summer around here! Months of dark, cold weather cause us to eat lots of stews and comfort foods, so spring time is very welcome in Scotland! I imagine you might be looking forward to some cooler days soon?

  47. We don't have the problem of hot weather here in the UK... I think 28C is hot and would just wilt and die in your current temperatures. Give me a sandwich of thick cut homemade bread, with sliced tomatoes and dill pickled cucumbers and mayonnaise any day! For an evening meal, how about an old-fashioned tea party? You know, small sandwiches, slices of cold meat, cheeses, salad, followed by jelly and ice-cream or fruit cake or fairy cakes. Great fun!

  48. Recipe 1 - Greek Salad

    You need cubed feta cheese, chopped onions, sliced cucumber (half the slices), cut tomatoes, black olives, olive oil, vinegar. Mix everything in a large bowl and serve with bread.

    Recipe 2 - Mozzarella Salad

    Bake 3 to 4 bell peppers in the oven until they are squashy and browned a bit, this takes about 20 min. Let them cool down a bit. In the meantime tear two balls of mozzarella into pieces an put in a large bowl, add some halfed cherry tomatoes or cut four big tomatoes. Peel the baked peppers, tear them into peaces or stripes and add them to the bowl. Add two handfulls of fresh basil leaves (can be chopped a bit), olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper, mix it well and serve with bread. This makes two servings.

    It's important to bake the bell peppers. When they are squashy they taste completely different.

    Recipe 3 - Tuna Salad

    Arrange a big handfull of salad leaves on a plate, add two cut tomatoes, two boiled eggs, and some tinned tuna. Season with olive oil, vinegar, salt and paprika and serve with bread. This is one serving.

    Recipe 4 - Beef Salad

    You need cold, boiled beef. Make an ordinary beef soup. If you don't want to eat it hot, you can freeze it and use it later for other dishes or sauces. Cut the beef into VERY thin slices (the thinner the better). Arrange it on a plate, season with salt, pepper, good oil, vinegar. Use pumpkin seed oil if you can. Spread some veggies over the beef and use what you have ... tomatoes, cucumber, salad leaves, peppers, etc. Serve with bread. This dish in combination with the pumpkin seed oil is a very typical summer dish in Austria, especially in Styria.

    Recipe 5 - Italian Snack

    Slather a bit of butter onto a few bread slices, put one or two fresh basil leaves onto the buttered bread slices and then tomato slices onto the basil leaves. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with olive oil.

    Recipe 6 - Cucumber Sandwiches

    Slice a cucumber, the thinner the better (as thin as a sheet of paper)and let the slices soak in a mixture of olive oil and vinegar for a few hours or overnight. Then spread a very thin layer of butter onto some sandwich bread slices(the squares) ... just enough butter to seal the bread. Now spread a thick layer of Philadelphia cheese (or something similar) onto the buttered slices. Put always two slices (buttered side on the inside) together and sandwich a layer of soaked cucumber.

    Enjoy! - Uschi from Austria

  49. Hi Rhonda, I'm blessed with two teenagers who eat anything but crave proper food instead of convenience. Spinach, red onion and tomato salad with griddled chicken and bacon, dressed with balsamic is always readily accepted. As is cold smoked Mackeral with horseradish mayo or a nice canned tuna and white bean Italian style salad. Griddled lamb and Corriander patties, served in naan breads with a homemade slaw is also very well received. Happy eating !

  50. We do a lot of grilling in the summer. Even the crock pot can emit heat, so I will put that out in the sun room to cook if needed. We also eat a lot of green leafy salads, pasta salads along with watermelons and cantaloupes. Veggies are either steamed ( I use my microwave steamer) or grilled or served cold. When it is just too hot, we eat very light as no one feels like eating much anyway.

  51. We eat a lot of veggies and salads in the summer months. In August temps here can get well over 100F. When we BBQ I like to have enough meat and veggies cooked up to last for a few days instead of just for one meal. DH is a meat and potatoes man. Salads just don't do it here he wants to know where's the beef.

  52. This is a very timely question Rhonda as last night we had my favorite "raw spaghetti"! It's actually zucchini done in a spiraliser gadget ( very simple) and it really does look like spaghetti. Beetroot, carrots etc. Can be done the same way. On top of the zucchini 'pasta' I made a sauce of chopped tomatoes, parsley, basil, olive oil & crushed coriander seeds, seasoned to taste - I let this sit in the fridge a while for flavors to amalgamate then put it on top of the zucchini and topped it with a few chopped raw cashews. If you don't have a spiraliser then grated or julienned zucchini would work ok. It was simple, very quick to prepare and clean up and tasted lovely and refreshing. DH loved it ! Cold soups are also nice in the heat, gazpacho etc. Enjoy !

  53. Rhonda I live in Florida where our climate is similar but at opposite times of the year. In the summer we tend to eat alot of cottage cheese with pear and a honey dill sauce, yogurt, fruit salad, grilled veggies, 3 bean salad, melons, tuna, potatoe salad, cole slaw and

  54. Enjoying this post for ideas :)

    My Nanna had 49.2 out the station last week (North of WA, Australia)... no aircon etc just a wet shirt and a wet towel on her head...
    must ask her what ~she~ ate lol :)

    off to get some more meal ideas

    Cheers - keep cool

  55. eta that's 49.2 C :) (sorry, no idea how to make that into F measurement)

  56. The salad looks delicious, although I'm interested on German Kartofflepuffer because they just looks yummy. Anyway, I love eating fruits during summer and very cold water. Thanks for sharing an interesting post.

  57. Reading through everybody's suggestions is making me quite hungry! Here are mine:

    Twice-baked potatoes in the microwave are always a favourite (bake once, split length-wise, scoop out flesh & mix w/ a bit of milk, salt & pepper and return to the potato 'boats', top w/ grated cheese, return to microwave to heat through and melt the cheese).

    Sliced cold meats & cheeses are easy in hot weather (either from refrigerated cooked or canned).

    Relish tray: salad things but not tossed in a bowl. Can include pickles, olives, celery stuffed with peanut butter or cream cheese, carrot sticks, cold broccoli & cauliflower rosettes and dips.

    Cheese & biscuits (crackers) on a board. Also different breads that were perhaps baked & frozen on a cooler day.

    Sloppy joes: ground beef (mince) with tomato-based spices on a roll. The meat mix can be frozen and thawed/heated through in the microwave.

    Ice-cream & fruit, frozen yoghurt or ice lollies.

    Fresh fruit on a skewer/kebab stick....or in a bowl with a dollop of yoghurt/drizzle of honey.

    Ripe avocadoes split, pit removed w/ a squeeze of lemon.

    Canned tuna fish sandwiches. (Hard-boiled) egg mayonnaise sandwiches. Both with greens, onions & tomatoes.

    Cold sliced meatloaf.

    Pita bread or wraps (burritos) stuffed/rolled with anything.

    Creamed mushrooms on toast (I use canned & heat on stove top or shorter time in microwave).

  58. Two of our favorite hot spell meals are pasta salad with lemon vinegrette and tuna OR BLT's and watermelon

  59. I think our family is an exception. We just eat whatever sounds good, regardless of the season.

    Instead of changing what we eat, I change the way I cook it. In the summer I grill more, I use a bread machine instead of the oven to bake bread, I use a crockpot out on the back deck, I use the microwave for cooking and not just reheating. I also cook early in the day, then reheat things for supper.

  60. I often eat a Greek salad, which is nothing short of a lovely cold treat and easy to make: cucumbers, tomatoes, Greek olives, some red onion, and a drizzle of olive oil and vinegar with some salt and pepper; then add a bit of Feta cheese for interest and nutrition. Very easy and wonderful ice cold!

  61. Monday was so excruciatingly hot. I had to put the sprinkler on out in the chicken run to cool the girls down, the kids spent most of the afternoon under the sprinkler too. Thank goodness it is cooler now.

    On Monday night we had homemade corn relish dip and some cheese and biscuits. Not an ideal dinner but it was so hot and we had the ingredients in the fridge. Tuesday night was sliced leg ham, boiled eggs and salad.

    We have also been freezing bananas now that they are cheaper and making smoothies with them. The kids like them so thick that they eat them with a spoon. Either with orange juice and frozen berries, or milk, honey and cocoa. A quick and easy breakfast or lunch on a stinkingly hot day.

    We have been very spoilt in having mild winters and summers these past few years.

    The Kartofflepuffer look absolutely delicious. I look forward to you posting the recipe.

  62. It seems the answer is salads - mine, too. My favourites:
    a) Lettuce with yoghurt and dill dip. We did it once with fresh spinach, too, although that was a bit of an acquired taste. Still good, though.
    b) Cucumber, peppers, tomatoes + a salty Balkan style cheese. Some onion, salt, olive oil, eventually some spices/herbs.
    c) Cucumbers with sour cream, can be spiced up with garlic, but tastes great on its own as well.

    Generally, salads with a dairy product! Refreshing, straight from the fridge, light, but still a bit more filling than just vegetables.
    Or fruit - berries with cream... A very good, easy and cold dessert is sponge biscuits with cream (and eventually fruit), left overnight in the fridge.
    Cucumbers are always a hit.
    Cold beetroot soups.

    Lemonade, or just water with lemon - that's not a meal, but it helps you stand the heats. This summer when I was in Estonia, it was VERY hot - but we survived quite well, because there was a deep well with extremely good, cold water.

  63. Marinated veggies, cold chicken salad sandwiches, coleslaw with an Asian vinaigrette, melon, BBQ chicken and corn on the cob .. not all at once :)

    We only get about 2 weeks of temps needing to use an air conditioner ..

    Eating outside helps too.

    Right now it's winter so I'm dreaming about summer :)

  64. I live in Japan where its extremely hot & humid in summer (I grew up in Brisbane but even Brisbane summers dont touch the heat here!)
    Last summer I made alot of 'cold meats' in the pressure cooker.
    2 chicken breasts in the pressure cooker with about 1 teaspoon of salt & water to cover - cook for about 5-10 mins and *key point here*
    allow to cool in the liquid it has been cooked in (this keeps the meat moist). When cool keep in the fridge in the liquid & use the meat in salads or serve with shredded onion & mayonaise, use on sandwiches etc. anything really.
    I have also done this with pork & beef. (I have made the chicken in a regular saucepan too, but pork & beef are better in the pressure cooker I think).
    When it too hot to think about cooking its great to be able to open the fridge & have something healthy, homemade, easy & ready to eat right there.
    I love the blog Rhonda. I just heard you on Life Matters.


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