Cool cooking for hot days

July 18, 2013 at 8:59 AM | Posted in cooking | Leave a comment
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Great article especially with the hot and humid weather we’ve been having! Ran across it on several sites so I thought I would pass it along, Enjoy.





Cool cooking for hot days
Keep the kitchen comfy by turning off the stove.

Whether or not you use air conditioning in your home, using the stove or oven on a hot July day is not the brightest idea. Baked lasagna will have the family baking as well. Bacon on the griddle will have you sizzling. Steaming vegetables — well, you get the idea.
Walk away from the stove or at least minimize its use. If you have to cook some items, do so in the morning when outside temperatures are lower. Crockpots and rice cookers are kinder to kitchen temperatures and outdoor grilling doesn’t heat up the house. But why not try totally heat-free meal prep some days?
Revitalizing your food prep habits might have you venturing into fun and creative menu planning.

“Not using the stove or oven opens up a world of possibilities and can lead to some healthy choices,” points out Karima Samadi, nutrition educator at the Greene County Extension Office of The Ohio State University, located in Xenia. “For instance, no stove means no frying and no red meats. Instead of pancakes, try yogurt and fruit for breakfast. Instead of a meat entrée for dinner, try an inventive salad.”

Sandwiches can be a summer-perfect choice even for dinner if you have an array of fixings and fresh wholegrain bread.

Many international cuisines keep cooking to a minimum so take a look at what other nations offer.

When’s the last time you tried a new fruit salad, or prepared a family favorite in a new way? Many cookbooks, such as “Absolutely Avocados,” as well as web sites are brimming over with “plant-based” recipes, the new darling of menu planning.

Samadi suggests looking at available grocery items differently. “Canned salmon can be used in salads and for wraps,” she points out.

“Think cold soups!” recommends Christina Bender, healthy eating specialist at Whole Foods Market in Mason. “Chilled soups such as peach soup and melon soup made in a blender are a great refreshing addition to any summer meal.”

Bender also suggests rethinking protein and looking beyond traditional sources. “Canned beans are a great base for a bean salad, or a topping for a fresh salad to make a complete meal,” she says. “Chickpeas, cannellini beans and black beans are all great options.”

Nutritionist Cindy Guirino, with offices on Brandt Pike in Dayton, points out that frozen shrimp can be the beginning to many cool summer meals. “Select shrimp that is already peeled and deveined,” she says. “Use it on salads or to eat as shrimp cocktail.”

Bounty from your garden, the produce stand or your favorite grocery will jumpstart your creativity.

“For fun and nutritious meal planning, ‘Eat the Rainbow,’” recommends Bender. “Strive to eat each color of fruits and vegetables each day.”

Breakfast can be cereal and blueberries (blue/purple); lunch is a green salad with Romaine, Kale, carrots, tomatoes and yellow bell peppers (green, orange, red, and yellow); and dinner is Portobello mushrooms with asparagus and chilled melon soup (brown/white, green, and orange).

Salmon Wraps


4 ounces low-fat cream cheese

1 can (14.75 ounces) salmon

3 tablespoons light Italian dressing

¼ teaspoon black pepper

6 (8-inch) whole wheat tortillas

rinsed lettuce or spinach leaves

1 cucumber

1 tomato


Soften cream cheese in medium bowl or microwave for 10 seconds.

Wipe top of salmon can before opening. Drain salmon in a colander and rinse with water.

Add salmon, dressing and pepper to cream cheese in medium bowl. Stir to blend.

Spread 1/3 cup filling on each tortilla. Spread to the edges.

Slice tomato thinly and cut slices in half.

Peel cucumbers. Cut in half lengthwise. Scoop out seeds with a spoon. Cut in half crosswise. Lay on flat side and cut into narrow strips.

Lay lettuce or spinach leaves in the center of the tortilla. Top with tomato and cucumber down the center of the tortilla.

Roll up tightly. Serve immediately or refrigerate.

Makes 8 wraps.

Source: the Ohio State University Extension Office, a recipe of the Iowa State office

Chilled Melon Soup with Basil


6 cups chopped honeydew

1/2 cup roughly chopped basil, plus more for garnish

1/4 cup lime juice, plus more to taste


Put all ingredients into a blender and purée, stirring often, until very smooth. Transfer to bowls and serve. Alternately, transfer to a container, cover and chill before serving.

Serves 4.

Source: Whole Foods Market in Mason

July 19-21, 2013 Wellington Cheese Festival – Wellington, Ohio

July 17, 2013 at 11:58 AM | Posted in cheese | Leave a comment
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July 19-21, 2013 Wellington Cheese Festival – Wellington, OhioCheesefest
The festival kicks off every 3rd weekend in July in historic downtown Wellington. Activities include performances, food, rides, games, Ohio wine tasting, parade, and macaroni & cheese eating contest.


2013 Cheese Heritage Festival
July 19th, 20th, 21st

Friday 5pm – 9pm
Saturday 10am – 10pm
Sunday noon – 6pm


Wild Idea Buffalo Recipe of the Week – Jill’s Favorite Buffalo Burgers

July 4, 2013 at 9:40 AM | Posted in grilling, Wild Idea Buffalo | Leave a comment
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Happy 4th of July everyone! And what better way to celebrate than firing that grill up and grilling some of the tastiest burgers around, a WIld Idea Buffalo Burger! This week’s Wild Idea Buffalo Recipe of the Week – Jill’s Favorite Buffalo Burgers. I left the link to the recipe and also a link to Wild Idea Buffalo where you can purchase Ground Buffalo or the pre-made patties. Enjoy everyone!




Jill’s Favorite Buffalo BurgersWild Idea Buffalo Jill’s Favorite Buffalo Burgers
By: Jill O’Brien

Makes 3 to 4 Buffalo Burgers
A little extra seasoning makes these buffalo burgers oh so good.


1 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon mustard
1 teaspoon ketchup
1/4 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon salt & pepper
1 lb. Ground Buffalo

1) – Mix all ingredients, but Buffalo together
2) – Add Buffalo& mix thoroughly with hands. Pat into 3 or 4, 1/2″ patties.
3) – Place in refrigerator to firm up burgers
4) – Grill over high heat (500* gas grill) for 3 minutes each side, closing grill lid during cooking time for Medium Rare.
5) – Finish with a sprinkle of high quality finishing salt






Wild Idea BuffaloWild Idea 1 lb Ground Bison
1 lb. Ground Buffalo
We grind our finest roasts and steaks to bring you the most delicious burgers anywhere. 90% – 92% Lean. 1 lb. Package.

33 Crowd-Pleasing July 4th Recipes

June 28, 2013 at 9:29 AM | Posted in Food, grilling | Leave a comment
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Here’s some Crowd-Pleasing July 4th Recipes from the Eating Well web site! I left the link to the site at the end of the post.



Eating Well



33 Crowd-Pleasing July 4th Recipes
We’ve got all the great-tasting, healthy recipes you’ll need for your 4th of July, healthier pasta salads and potato salads, juicy burgers and flavorful grilled meat recipes. But the real star is dessert. This gorgeous flag cake, made with a lightened cream cheese frosting and fresh summer berries, is sure to have everyone ooh-ing and ahh-ing. And don’t miss our easy red, white and blue recipes featured on NBC’s Today show!
Put a fresh twist on your classic American fare with this selection of easy, healthy July 4th recipes. Make a festive menu for your July 4th cookout with delicious coleslaws and potato salads, juicy burgers and grilled chicken and of course, fresh summer desserts. These All-American recipes for the 4th of July are healthier versions of classic picnic favorites that everyone at your cookout will enjoy.


Peach Custard Pie
We use low-fat milk along with nonfat Greek yogurt in the creamy custard for this peach pie. The yogurt gives the custard a smooth texture without using cream or too many egg yolks. A slice is just as delicious served warm from the oven as it is chilled. For an added treat, serve topped with fresh blueberries….


Beer-Barbecued Chicken
Here’s our spin on the roast-a-chicken-on-top-of-a-can-of-beer technique that’s popular with barbecue aficionados. To simplify things, we just pour a little beer inside the chicken as it cooks. The beer keeps the meat juicy and a smoky-flavored spice rub both under and over the skin gives it extra flavor. Barbecuing poultry with the skin on helps prevent the meat from drying out. To keep calories and fat in check, remove the skin before serving…..


Get these and more Eating Well recipes by clicking the link below!

July 13-15, 2012 65th Annual Italian American Festival – Akron, Ohio

July 13, 2012 at 12:39 PM | Posted in Festivals, Food, grilling | 1 Comment
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July 13-15, 2012 65th Annual Italian American Festival – Akron, Ohio
Sponsored by the Italian-American Council, the festival will offer food, contests, music, fireworks and more. Attendance: 50,000.

The 65th Annual Italian-American Festival begins Friday, July 13th at 11 am, and this year things are shaping up to make this the best festival yet! Download our schedule and plan to spend the whole weekend with good food, good music, and good friends at beautiful Lock 3 in downtown Akron!
Let’s see if we can make this our 4th year in a row Akron Beacon Journal readers vote us the Top Festival in Summit County in the Beacon’s Best Poll!

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