When temperatures get over 25C, finding the motivation to cook in a hot kitchen is impossible for me! Not only that, but my family is not craving big, heavy meals.
Like I mentioned earlier, we keep our meals simple, and centered around fresh produce and anything we can cook on our BBQ.
It can be tempting to eat out in an air conditioned restaurant, but I promise you, with a teeny bit of planning- you can eat at home & save yourself a bundle!
This week our temperatures are supposed to reach 30+C, so I'm going to share what we're doing to get simple, delicious meals on the table.
Before we get to the food, here are a few tips:
1) Think about dinner for 5 minutes first thing in the morning before you head to work or the park for the day. Do you need to take anything out to thaw? Can you get something started in the crockpot? Do you need to pick up a loaf of french bread to complete the meal? Maybe you want to toss the meat in a bag with a marinade and have it ready for the BBQ when you get home.
2) We tend to eat dinner late. No one is hungry at 5 pm when the house is the hottest. We just keep the fluids going, maybe eat some fruit and start dinner around 8. Obviously this is harder to do when you have young kids with early bedtimes, but it works well for us.
3) Have your favorite veggies and fruit, cut up and ready. I recently started using the Fridgesmart from Tupperware. These containers keep my produce fresh twice as long as normal. If your produce is ready to go, you can simply grill some meat and serve a fresh veggie or fruit tray.
4) Do your food prep outside. Our summers are so short that I'm outside every chance I get. Our kitchen is crazy hot in the evening so I prep corn on the cob or cut veggies outside on our deck table. If you have an outdoor outlet, you can even use a crockpot, griddle, rice cooker or electric frying pan outside. Don't forget that most BBQ's have a side burner, great for boiling corn or cooking potatoes.
5) Get a tray or even a small cookie sheet & load it up wih everything you need to set the table outside. Our tray has a water pitcher, plates, cutlery, butter dish, serving spoons & tongs, hot pads & napkins. This also makes clean up faster as everything can be carried back inside in 1 or 2 trips. Once the dishes are clean, load up the tray again & have it ready for the next meal.
Join me tomorrow, when I will show you one of our favourite hot weather meals!