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ahoy hoy & warm weather cooking

What's new, magoos?

I have this weird transition-to-warm-weather issue, and it's figuring out what the hell to cook.  Basically it seems like though I long for the fresh berries and tons of in-season vegetables of summer, I get faced with warmer temperatures and go, "Bzuh?" when trying to think what to make.  I have no idea why!  I guess fall and winter are easier -- heavier, cheesier, which is already sounding like a lovely lyric to me.  And I love roasted vegetables and will continue to make them all year round (even if I doubt my own sanity when the temps will begin to inch up to the 90s with hiiiigh humidity).  But if you would be doves and tell me what the hell you're making these days that's great for warm weather serving, I'd love to hear about it and get some inspiration.

What I've made recently, in case you're curious:

  • A pureed Zuppa di Ceci that's always good, because who doesn't like pureed chick peas, tomatoes, rosemary, garlic-scented oil, etc. (even if hot soup on a day that turned out to be 80 degrees was, well, perhaps not totally the smartest move?

  • Butternut Squash and Kale Quesadillas -- quite good, but are you starting to see my issue?  Does that not sound like a fall dish???  Still, they were yummy with more chili powder added, a fresh lime squeezed in, and collards rather than kale.

  • My standard Tofu and Greens (marinade of ginger, garlic, soy sauce, sesame oil, lime juice), which is such a fail-safe served over brown rice, but can be made any time of year, oh my god.

  • These Spicy Tuna Cakes -- I have no interest in cooking Paleo, but they were super good (even if I don't totally understand why the hell ghee is more paleo (did cavemen take the time to herd cows and then make ghee while they were walking twelve hours a day foraging?  I'm kind of doubting it?  Sorry, I am a little impatient with paleo, even though I like some of the recipes, so there's possibly an obvious answer I'm being too dismissive to recognize.) But yeah, must it be summer to cook that dish?  No, it musn't.  You're picking up what I'm laying down, right?

So yes, suggestions welcome!  However, do not tell me to make something with ramps.  I've seen so many recipes using ramps, and they're impossible to get.  NO ramps!  >:(

Meanwhile, lilacs are still abloom here, and it is glorious.


( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 22nd, 2015 04:47 pm (UTC)
Whole wheat pita, hummus, lettuce, feta, kalamata olives, tomatoes and cucumber on a big platter is a go to Summer meal. I also make a lot of grilled corn and bean salads and ratatouille to have in the refrigerator. The mister could eat burgers every day so I let him have at it and eat all the side salads in the world!
May. 22nd, 2015 08:49 pm (UTC)
That all sounds pretty nice, definitely meze-ish, but weirdly I eat all those things in a lunch-y way during the winter, and of course in other combos all year round. You're absolutely right, though, that a meze-style thing is the way to go. I actually have a baked felafel salad thing planned for later this weekend, so I should keep reminding myself to return to my roots. Side salads can be pretty awesome, it's true! Get some blue cheese and roasted beets on there, forget about it (oh my god, that's totally a winter salad, isn't it? *headdesks*).
May. 22nd, 2015 11:01 pm (UTC)
I eat like this all year, too. There really isn't much transition around here other than cooking only once or twice a week so i don't heat up the kitchen when it's a hundred plus degrees outside. I make bread, pop in a quiche, roast beets and carrots all in one go. I still love long braises but I switch them to the crock pot.
May. 24th, 2015 02:24 am (UTC)
That's smart to multi-roast things to minimize house-heating. A mother of a friend of mine does nearly all crock-pot cooking during the summer, and she even has the crock-pot banished to their screened-in porch. :D
May. 22nd, 2015 05:34 pm (UTC)
I'm with you on this issue. I tend to favor the heavier, and heartier, dishes of winter. I'm always a bit stubborn when it comes to transitioning. At the moment I'm making a lot of mexican inspired dishes, and a few asian ones. Lots of hot stove cooked meals. Lean meats, veggies, stir fry, etc.
May. 22nd, 2015 08:52 pm (UTC)
Why is the transition so hard??? Also, I guess heavier things are more automatically go-tos because of the comfort factor (and let's be honest, the yummy factor). Mexican-ish stuff is totally always delicious; I could eat that all year long!
May. 22nd, 2015 08:22 pm (UTC)
OMG, I have the same problem. All winter long I am wishing for the beautiful ripe produce of summer... and then summer gets here and I get confused that I can't make my winter comfort food dishes without heating up the house.
May. 22nd, 2015 08:47 pm (UTC)
THANK YOU; I NO LONGER WALK ALONE! Okay, we shall form a support group together, because what gives? Maybe it's because our winters have become so utterly nutso, but I think I've had this winter-minded-cooking issue for years now.
May. 23rd, 2015 12:43 pm (UTC)
I am not an adventurous eater or cook. I was going to suggest boring things like pasta salad or tossed salads with dried cranberries or mandarin oranges or apples, with nuts and those crunchy things I can't think of the name of right now, and maybe some strips of grilled chicken...

We cook on the grill a lot (even in the winter, tbh) so maybe just turn mac&cheese into a macaroni salad (add tuna to make it a meal by itself). My mom used to make a cucumber thing that was kinda like a faux pickle (with sugar and vinegar maybe?). Broccoli salad!

*hangs head*
May. 24th, 2015 02:26 am (UTC)
Ha, no worries! I actually have various pasta salads/pasta combos I do make, though again, none of them are really summer specific... I actually also have a couple of cucumber salad recipes I'll trot out soonish, so that's a good reminder!

Tonight I made some great baked felafel and we had roasted cauliflower, and I don't know, I'll get the hang of summer-specific dishes eventually.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )


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