It's hot again. I know I spent some time earlier this year complaining about it being cold and wondering when, oh when, it would warm up. Um, it has. It reached ninety degrees today and as I sit here typing at 10:12 pm, it is still seventy-seven degrees. And humid. It's really the humidity that kills me. I'm sticky. And hot. I'm thinking I just need to get the complaining out now and then I'll get used to it? I'm not sure. I'm just not a hot weather person. (Lucky for me the cold weather lasts much longer here in Minnesota).
What makes me really dislike the hot weather is that it slows me down and makes me not want to do so many of the things I love. Like cooking, and sewing. I waited until just now to put some bread in, since it's been too hot to turn on the oven all day. And I'm staring longingly at my half-finished (okay, more like half-started) sewing project sitting all cut out on the table. Must finish that soon (I do of course want to wear that tank top this summer).
What makes summer eating more enjoyable though (despite the aversion to cooking) is all of the fresh produce. Do I even have to say it? I don't think so. I'm all about cold salads right now. All I'm getting from my garden so far is lettuce and chives (and a few surviving strawberries!), so we're using what we've got. I won't even pretend like this is actually a recipe I'm sharing here, it's really more like a jumping off point for whatever you've got/like to eat. I call it: cous cous salad. Take some cooked cous cous (1 cup uncooked cous cous would be plenty for two people as a meal, or four people as a side) and let it cool to room temperature. Pick out some veggies that you like. In this case, I used some green bell pepper, yellow tomatoes, carrots, and some of the chives from my garden. I like a little crunch, so I added some sunflower and sesame seeds. You could also add in some dried cranberries if you're into that sort of thing (I go back and forth on that. Right now, I'm forth).
As for a dressing, I did this: mix some olive oil, red wine vinegar, a little bit of orange juice, stone ground mustard, sea salt, and freshly ground pepper (I don't know measurements, just kind of to taste). I always mix my salad dressings in a small jar, which makes it easy to shake them up (I hate when salad dressing isn't mixed well enough and all you get is the oil). I'm now thinking that Molly's mint syrup would be really good on this salad too. I'll have to try that next time.
So there you have it. A nice jumping off point for some summer meals. This would also work great with quinoa or pretty much any other grain like that. It would also be good served on a bed of lettuce, if you've got some lying around. And in the meantime, park yourself in front of a fan, and enjoy the summer. What's your favorite hot weather food?