Do you really want to get stuck cooking over a hot stove or pulling food out of the oven? During summer’s hottest days, the last thing I want to do is sweat it out in the kitchen, so I turn to these no-cook dishes that only require a little chopping, dicing and chilling. From citrus and cumin infused ceviches, to sun kissed tomato and watermelon gazpachos, these are my summer staples that always win with friends and family.
Zucchini and Herbed Goat Cheese Appetizers
2 Zucchinis sliced 1/8 inch thin using a mandolin
Coarse sea salt
8oz goat cheese at room temperature
2 tsp fresh chopped herbs of your choice such as dill, tarragon and parsley
12 chive sprigs, cut in half
Salt the sliced zucchinis and lay flat on a paper towel lined plate. Leave for 5 minutes or until the zucchini is moveable and has released its water. Pat dry. Mix the goat cheese with the chopped herbs. Spread a small amount of herb mixture across the zucchini slice and place a chive sprig on one end. Roll the zucchini, starting with the chive end. Place the zucchini roll up with the chive sprig side up and refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving.
Roasted Pepper and Cumin Dusted Ceviche
1 lb fresh, sushi grade fish of your choice (like Grouper, Snapper, Tuna, or Halibut)
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup chopped cilantro
1 can roasted red bell pepper, chopped
1/4 red onion, chopped fine
salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp cumin
Chop the fish roughly into bite, sized pieces. Add the remaining ingredients for the ceviche, toss gently until combined and marinate the refrigerator for up to 6 hours. If you plan on serving it the following day, drain the liquid and replace in the refrigerator (this prevents the fish from becoming tough).
Roasted Corn Salsa
2 roasted ears of corn, husked
1 avocado, diced
1 ripe red tomato, seeded and chopped
1/2 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
1/4 cup diced jicama
1/4 cup red onion, diced
3 tbsp chopped cilantro
Juice from 1 lime
Salt and pepper to taste
Combine all the ingredients and toss gently. To serve, place a bed of lettuce in the bottom of a bowl. Top with ceviche and roasted corn salsa.
Sweet and Smoky Gazpacho
5 ripe red tomatoes, roughly chopped
5 Persian cucumbers, roughly chopped
1 green bell pepper, seeded a d roughly chopped
2 cups roughly chopped seedless watermelon
1/2 red onion roughly chopped
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
1/4 cup smoked olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Blend all the ingredients very well until completely smooth. Refrigerate for several hours or overnight until very cold. To serve, spoon into bowl and top with smoked olive oil and finely chopped cucumbers.