Ovenless Entertaining — Summer Soiree
When it’s too hot to fathom cooking, it’s easy to fall back on unhealthy packaged foods or takeout. But with the right recipes in your warm-weather arsenal, you can still enjoy homemade soups, salads, sandwiches and sweets. As we enter the hottest days of summer, now’s a good time to take stock of what you’ll need at the store to get you through some no-cook meals. Pull off your next summer gathering without ever turning on your oven with these top no-cook recipes from Food Network chefs.
If you're considering preparing soup any time soon, a no-cook option like gazpacho is the way to go. Here, the mild, slightly sweet flavor of watermelon makes a surprisingly wonderful addition to this cool dish.
Bountiful salads loaded with grilled meat and vegetables are great, but standing over hot coals on a 90-degree afternoon is not. Enter Ina Garten’s five-minute appetizer, a less painstaking but equally divine salad that makes a beautiful display to have on your picnic table. Vary the color of your tomatoes to get the most-appealing presentation.
When it comes to the entree, don’t overthink it. There’s nothing wrong with serving quick, simple and satisfying wraps for the main event. Most importantly, wraps (or sandwiches) will help you fulfill your goal of keeping the oven off, especially if you load them up with fresh vegetables and cold cuts like the juicy, rare roast beef pictured here. Quick and easy dill slaw, made with pre-shredded coleslaw mix, gives this lunchtime classic a crunchy, flavorful twist.
Bobby Flay’s hearty summer salad is a lot like a deconstructed taco. He uses blue corn tortilla chips to add crunch to a medley of diced avocados, tomatoes, nicoise olives and chickpeas. Toss all the ingredients together with some cumin and paprika, then crumble the chips on top for a side that’s ready in just 15 minutes, no heat required.
Matt Armendariz, 2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved
These creamy, sweet-and-salty bars are everything you want from a dessert: a chocolatey crust, a smooth middle layer and a crunchy topping, here in the form of honey-roasted peanuts. The secret to eliminating the oven? Melted chocolate and just a little bit of butter make the crust crispy without baking.
For more ways to avoid your oven or stove this summer, check out these no-cook recipes from our friends:
Dishin & Dishes: Coral Snake Salsa (Apricot Tomatillo)
Domesticate Me: Arugula Salad with Shaved Zucchini, Pistachios and Parmesan
Taste with the Eyes: Santa Barbara Sea Urchin à la Jean-Georges
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Tomato & Mozzarella Sandwich with Basil-Garlic Scape Pesto