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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

It's hot outside!!

Hot summer days in Georgia.  For someone who can't stand the heat, I certainly enjoyed hot yoga yesterday.  My exercise regime is worthy of an entirely different blog! So how do we cool off during these summer days.  The days of sitting on the porch swing, sipping lemonade appear to be returning to some neighborhoods.  That is so nice to see.  Since I don't have a front porch, or a porch swing, I try and find other ways to keep cool.

Fresh fruit:  I eat a lot of fresh fruit in the summer for breakfast. Watermelon is especially cooling for me. It is so good this time of year too.  I had some the other day that was so sweet it would rival any candy bar in existence.


 Salad for lunch, salad for dinner. I enjoy, and actually crave a nice green salad with fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, hearts of palm, and any and every kind of olive that exists.  If I have feta cheese, I add that too.  Recently, I have started added fresh parsley, lemon thyme, dill, basil and a touch of mint to give my salad a little variation (plus, I'm successfully growing all of these on my deck). Salad is one of my comfort foods. We had it for dinner every night when I was a child.  The variety may change from time to time, but my preferred salad dressing is still oil, vinegar, and lemon

Tuna salad:  I don't make tuna salad that often, but I do enjoy it.  Tuna is fish.  Any fish that I eat has to be loaded with lemon.  Sometimes I make tuna salad French style (Nicoise) with steamed green beans, potatoes, and olives.  Other times, the old fashioned "southern style" tuna salad with boiled egg, mayonnaise, celery, and tuna (I still add lemon to the chagrin of many southerners).  I also add chopped dill pickles or chopped olives in lieu of the sweet relish.

Curry Chicken Salad:  Spice is good for cooling off during the summer.  I enjoy curry salad with double the amount of curry called for in most recipes.  Apples, celery, almonds, and grapes add to the mix nicely.  Yes, I manage to sneak some lemon in with the honey mustard.

Shrimp Salad:  Grill a few shrimp, toss them on a bed of salad greens and instant meal.

Salmon or Red Snapper cooked on the grill is a summer favorite too.

Ice coffee:  I enjoy my hot tea or coffee in the morning no matter the temperature.  During the hot afternoon, I may have some ice coffee with milk and sugar.  It's different and something I certainly don't drink during the winter.

Ice cream:  I'm a purist.... bring on the vanilla!  I do try other flavors too, but all of them are vanilla based.  I can't remember the last time I had a milk shake, so vanilla ice cream and fresh fruit will work nicely.

Sorbet:  For this sweet treat, bring on the zing!! I like the Zesty Lemon sorbet as well as mango sorbet.  Top either of these with fresh blueberries, blackberries, and almonds for a really healthy treat.

Spa water:  My own blend of cucumber, lemon, mint, honey.  I may add orange slices too.

Water! Water! Water!  Probably the most important thing one can drink to stay cool.  I'm lucky as I do enjoy the taste of water.

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Ingredients I must have in my kitchen (It's a long list, but I try and have these items on hand)

  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • Cheese
  • Cumin
  • Curry
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Fresh Bread
  • Fresh Cilantro
  • Fresh Fruit
  • Fresh Garlic
  • Fresh Parsley
  • Greek Oregano
  • Kalamata Olives
  • Lemon ( At least 3 or 4 ALWAYS)
  • Peppers (Wax, Jalapeno, banana)
  • Red Wine Vinegar
  • Regular Olive Oil
  • Rice
  • Salad Ingredients
  • Sea Salt
  • Spanish Olives
  • White Balsamic Vinegar