It’s officially hot — which means I need to officially avoid turning on my stove-top or oven to get dinner on the table.
For some reason, I’ve been clinging to the idea that I can handle cooking in my small-ish Brooklyn kitchen when it’s 80° outside — but the only things coming out of that kitchen right now are rushed, mediocre dinners and a very grumpy, sweaty me.
Well, I say “no more.”
I liberate myself from the need to personally poach, boil or broil the goodies that go on my dinner plate. I give myself the go-ahead to splurge on items that have been sautéed and roasted for me. I embrace the cold, the chilled and the room temperature. I love NOT cooking dinner!
My battle cry of summertime non-cookery tomfoolery is aided in a BIG way by FreshDirect. With a dab of elbow grease and some great items from across the website, I can have a delicious meal on the table in minutes without breaking a sweat.
Here are some hot tips for keeping your cool:
I totally dig these birds. I think they are just as delicious cold (like, “midnight raid on leftovers” delicious) as they are piping-hot out of the oven. Plus, they come in a variety of seasonings and they are made with chicken raised without the use of antibiotics.
My personal favorite is the Garlic & Lime Rotisserie Chicken, and my fiancée and I have been enjoying:
- Wandering around the apartment, drumstick in hand with a sprinkle of coarse salt on top (him)
- Cutting up breast meat and scattering it over a green salad with a variety of veggies (me)
- Shredding and piling the meat on top of a soft tortilla with salsa and queso blanco, then broiling it in a toaster oven until warmed through (both of us)
I think our deli salads are pretty dang tasty, and they run the gamut from creamy classics to hearty grain- and veggie-laden treats. They also easily transition from side dishes to the center of your dinner plate.
- Mix our roasted beet salad with crumbled Gorgonzola and pre-washed arugula for an artful and easy salad. Add some protein (um, like diced rotisserie chicken?) and make it your main dish!
- Feeling like a lobster roll but don’t want to leave your AC? Our New England-Style shrimp salad makes a great substitute when spooned into soft potato rolls.
- Toss our grilled mixed vegetable salad with baby greens and tahini-dressing, then pile it high in pocket bread for a tasty (portable) meal.
- I like plumping up our delicious pesto pasta salad with a variety of fresh vegetables, like: cherry tomatoes, shredded raw zucchini, shredded carrots, julienned bell pepper or julienned organic lacinato kale. The result is a colorful pasta dish that’s great for picnics or barbecues.
Sometimes the heat just takes it ALL out of me and the thought of an actual, composed meal is just too much. In these moments, I opt for a couple of easy small plates to put out on the table for casual grazing.
This laid-back approach to dinner keeps me from getting stressed and makes dinner more interactive and fun. Some of my favorite no-cook grazing dishes are:
- Sliced summer melon wrapped in prosciutto and finished with fresh lemon juice
- A simple cheese plate with crackers, fresh berries or grapes and soft, fresh cheeses (like chevre, ricotta or quark)
- A Greek-style salad with chunks of cucumber, tomato, onion, feta cheese and kalamata olives
- Extra-firm tofu cut into large cubes and topped with freshly grated ginger, minced scallions, lemon juice and soy sauce.
- Caprese salad. You just can’t get more summery than thick slices of juicy tomato, leaves of sweet basil and creamy mozzarella finished with a drizzle of olive oil. Sometimes, it’s the simple things in life…
Be sure to check out all of our great no-cook One-Click Recipes!
What’s your favorite thing to NOT cook? Post it on the FreshDirect Facebook page!