The last couple of weeks around here have been smoking! We’ve had more 90 degree days than I can remember. I am not complaining this is merely an observation. I adore the heat; however, I don’t look forward to the energy bill that will be coming next month, but these beat the heat meals and treats have come in handy.
We’ve had our fair share of grilled meals which of course means the Mr. has to brave the sun and humidity. In order to give him a little break main dish salads have been our bread and butter so to speak. I’m still going downstairs like a toddler so there hasn’t been as much baking as I’d like. And besides, hot weather calls for cool treats right?
The meal ideas and treats I’m sharing don’t have a specific recipe and that’s what I love about main dish salads. They’re a great way to use leftovers and make use of what’s in season.
After I made this pasta salad I realized that I still tend to cook like all of the kids are still home. I started with only a half cup of pasta thinking I was using a small amount. However, when you add in everything but the kitchen sink it adds up to a lot. There were tons of leftovers. After the second or third day dear hubby is ready for something different.
In addition to the penne pasta there was salami, ham, shredded cheese artichokes, olives, tomatoes, cukes, red and green, broccoli, peppers plus pepperoncini. A store bought salad dressing was used for seasoning and to bring it all together.
Time was slipping away from me with the Fajita Salad and we were quite hungry. I used frozen chicken breasts chunks seasoned with my favorite Mexican spices along with black beans, lettuce, tomatoes, jicama, cheese, fresh corn kernels, avocado slices and tortilla strips. Dressing wasn’t even necessary for this one.
As of late I have a thing for gelato and do plan to make some before summer’s end. For this sweet treat I bought Pistachio Gelato and I get happy all over again just thinking about it! I garnished it with candied pistachios and slightly adapted a recipe found at the Wright Family Table. You’ll find the quick and easy recipe and the end of this post.
It’s served in these brightly color treat cups that I got in the dollar section at Michaels. For additional décor I used short segments of paper straws and the garnished each cup with sprigs of mint.
Mr. Sweets loves his plain old vanilla ice cream but he does like vanilla bean. This cute blue ceramic bowl is just the right size for a somewhat generous serving. It was way to plain for my taste and I dressed it up with some raspberry sauce.
Simple meals and desserts taste good in any type of weather and each season brings its own bounty of goodies we can use to fill our tummies and make life a bit easier. What if any meal shortcuts have you used so far this summer?
- 3 TBS sugar
- 2 TBS honey
- Dash of vanilla
- 1 cup shelled pistachios
- In a medium pan over medium heat, combine the sugar and honey.
- Let cook until sugar is dissolved.
- Add pistachios and a pinch of salt (unless your pistachios are already salted), stirring to combine.
- Turn the heat up to medium high, and cook for another 1-2 minutes until the syrup evenly coats the pistachios and is very thick.
- Dump pistachios in an even layer onto a piece of parchment or silpat to cool.
- The coating will be sticky, but will harden as it sits. Let cool completely.
These are the linky parties I participate in. Drop by and show them a little love!
When the temps are soaring it’s good to have some beat the meals and treats ideas to save the day.