The dog days of summer have officially ended but the heat is still here. Here are a few simple and delicious no –cook / low – cook recipes that leverage the seasonal bounty at the farmer’s market but won’t cause a heat wave in your kitchen. From an elegant ricotta tartine to a no-hassle poached salmon, Sarah’s creations will help you beat the heat without sacrificing flavor or style.
Low-Cook, Elegant Summer Recipes
(serves 1, double, triple, quadruple, etc. for your specific needs)
Asparagus Ricotta Tartine
(or any fresh fruit/vegetable of your liking)
- 2 fresh slices of your favorite thick-cut bread, fresh/fluffy focaccia is perfect (split in half, cut sides up) OR any leftover freezer bread you have in-house; a quick nuke/butter (butter or oil & salt first!)/toast to lightly golden brown
- ½ cup fresh ricotta (a great staple b/c it has at least a week shelf life and comes in 4/8/16oz containers for varied needs)
- 3 stalks of large asparagus, trimmed & peeled, tips saved for garnish
- Schmear on 1/4" layer of fresh ricotta on each piece of bread and season w/ salt and fresh ground black pepper.
- Slice the asparagus stalks into 1/8" coins or rounds. toss/dress lightly with squeeze of lemon juice (zest too if you’re feeling fancy), salt & pepper and extra virgin olive oil.
- Line up the coins on the bread making a chevron pattern.
- Garnish with extra salad greens (arugula/spinach/cress) if avail and indulge
- Variations - zucchini ribbons, classic tomatoes w/ balsamic vinegar, fresh figs with honey (don’t skip on the salt & pepper) add prosciutto to any of these for additional protein
Poached Salmon, Corn & Tomato Salad
- 1 large ear of corn
- 1 large beefsteak tomato, cut into wedges or chunks (2 meds, 3 plums, handful of cherry or grape, whatever ya got)
- 5 oz skinless salmon filet
- Basil leaves
- Sherry vinegar & olive oil
- In a pot of well-salted boiling h20 (add lemon, garlic, onion and/or bay leaves if in house to infuse the water), cook the corn for about 5-6 minutes. Remove and allow to cool enough to handle. Turn down your water to a simmer.
- Season the salmon well with s&p, slip into simmering corn water and poach to desired doneness. Remove and allow to cool enough to handle and flake into large chunks with a fork
- Shave the corn kernels into a bowl. Add salmon flakes and tomatoes. Season w/ s&p. Gently toss with favorite in-house vinaigrette (or use your favorite vinegar and oil, or even just a piece of citrus - zest & juice).
- Sprinkle with a handful of torn basil leaves and serve (or whatever seasonal herb you have in house. Additions/variations: Add sliced scallions, minced garlic or shallots, slivered red onions to your salad for flavor boosts. Use what you got!
Peach Caprese with Red Onions and Grilled Chicken
- 1 large ripe peach, pitted and cut into thin wedges
- 2 oz fresh mozzarella, sliced and cut into half-moons (could also use cigliene - whatever's in the fridge)
- 1/4 small red onion, thinly sliced
- Balsamic vinegar & olive oil (or any favorite dark vinegar in house; I’m currently using an aged fig balsamic that has amazing deep flavor)
- 4 oz leftover or store bought grilled chicken breast
- Prep your products.
- Season with salt and pepper, a splash of balsamic vinegar and drizzle of olive oil. toss gently and plate (if using grilled chicken or protein as base, warm lightly and place in center of dish, then spoon the salad on top).
- Garnish with any fresh herbs or greens in house.