Nobody wants to spend all day in the kitchen when it’s sunny and beautiful outside or, for that matter, when temperatures and humidity are sky high. This month’s dishes take those scenarios into account and can help you get dinner on the table without breaking a sweat!
Minute Steak with Chimichurri and Grilled Summer Vegetables
Maybe your way of escaping the heat of the kitchen is to move outside to the grill. If that’s the case, a quickly seared “minute steak” and thinly sliced vegetables can truly be on the table in a matter of minutes! All you need to do is take a skirt, strip or thinly cut Delmonico steak and quickly slather it with a little Argentinian chimichurri. While it’s grilling and then resting, veggies can take their turn on the grill. No need for heavy starches either. Slice up some corn on the cob, toss it onto the grill and you will have your carb fix covered!
Egg & Avocado Salad Sandwich
It’s become easier to prepare meals without using any heat at all thanks to the value-added ingredients that are now available. For example, eggs, which are an excellent source of protein, can be purchased boiled, peeled and ready to go. In this case, avocado can seamlessly replace much of the mayonnaise that’s called for in the classic egg salad. Add some freshly sliced tomatoes, a few crunchy lettuce leaves and a healthier whole-grain roll, and you’ve got a lacto-ovo vegetarian sandwich that is sort of like a New England lobster roll, only at a tenth of the cost. If you want to fold in some lobster, crab, shrimp or even cooked chicken, that wouldn’t be a bad thing either, thus capturing the best of all worlds: healthy, affordable and yummy!
Tropical Chicken and Vegetable Wrap
On a hot day, a cold, no-cook dish is super refreshing. Save time by using pre-cooked grilled chicken strips. Throw in some tropical flavors and you’ll be transported to an exotic destination. Here, pineapple and a zesty, crunchy cabbage slaw combine with the chicken strips and wonton noodles to create an exciting-to-eat wrap that is perfect for lunch or dinner at home or on the go.
Pasta and Fresh Tomato Sauce
All this requires is a brief stint over the stove for say 8-10 minutes while pasta cooks. During that time you can easily whip together a fresh, uncooked, almost bruschetta-like tomato sauce made from ripe, juicy and sweet local tomatoes, fresh basil and some olive-oil-toasted garlic. Since there are only a few ingredients involved, superior quality is paramount!
As for the pasta, choose one that is not too heavy for the light sauce (I used radiatore from DaVinci). It’s also imperative that you don’t rinse the pasta after cooking it. The tiny starches that are released by cooking – and still reside on the outside of the noodles (if not rinsed off) – will help the light olive oil and tomato-basil juices cling to them a little better. When just al dente, simply drain the noodles, toss with the other ingredients and enjoy!