Let us introduce you to your new favorite pasta sauce: salsa cruda. Its Italian name translates as “raw sauce,” and it’s typically a tomato-based mixture tossed with other fresh ingredients that are so full of flavor they don’t need to be cooked.
A melon baller is the sort of tool everyone has stuffed in a drawer, but we bet you rarely reach for it. Next time you find yourself stuck in a recipe rut, dig it out — and try one of these unique ways to use it.
Serve a Boozy Treat
Scooped melon bites already look adorable served in individual glasses, but then Jessica Merchant (the blogger behind How Sweet Eats) makes them even more irresistible: She douses them in a bright mixture of lime juice, honey, mint and rum.
Try it: Boozy Minted Melon Balls (above)
I don’t know about you, but I don’t get the hype about cooking outside in the summer. It’s hot outside. That officially makes it the last place I want to be, except if the other choice is in front of a flaming grill. No, sir. When the weather heats up, I say, take it inside and let the sweet AC work its magic. That brings me to another appliance I have all kinds of love for: my oven. These are my favorite ways to enjoy all those fresh summer vegetables without sweating it out in the process. And if your oven tends to heat your house up? Roast up one of these dishes in the morning, before the sun has a chance to sizzle — that way your home will be cooler come dinnertime.
Leave it to Ina Garten to elevate simple zucchini to a decadent dish. With 364 reviews and a 5-star rating (not to mention the promise of fresh breadcrumbs and all that melted Gruyère), this one’s officially on my summer food bucket list.
Shrimp are quick to cook and even quicker to disappear from your plate, but they’re even better smoky and hot off the grill. Now that it’s August and the grill’s sizzled its fair share of burgers and hot dogs, give classic shrimp dishes the grilled treatment too.
A lemony, garlicky and buttery plate of shrimp scampi is one of our fans’ most-beloved dishes — and it’s even better done up on the grill. Bobby Flay’s Grilled Shrimp Scampi dish has all the bright flavor of the classic, plus a delightful char.
Pasta, beef and cheese are the foundation of many crowd-pleasing dinners: spaghetti and meatballs, pasta Bolognese and these top-rated manicotti, this week’s Most Popular Pin of the Week. Giada De Laurentiis stuffs large tube-shaped noodles with a mixture made from ground beef and three cheeses — ricotta and mozzarella for rich creaminess, and nutty Parmesan for a welcome salty bite — and covers them with her favorite bottled sauce. Before baking it, she tops the dish with another layer of mozzarella and Parmesan, which will begin to bubble in the oven.
For more hearty dinner ideas, check out Food Network’s Let’s Cook Comfort Food board on Pinterest.
Get the recipe: Beef and Cheese Manicotti
We’ve learned a valuable lesson this summer: Turning on the oven or stove during a heat wave is no way to live. Then again, neither is a diet of straight salads. If you’ve resigned yourself to choose between sweaty, miserable meal prep and monotonous bowls of leafy greens, we’re here to throw you a lifesaver. We’ve been hard at work planning no-cook summer meals to keep you cool and satisfied throughout the day. Here’s a sample menu to keep on hand for the next time temperatures rise:
You don’t need fried eggs and bacon to give yourself a morning energy boost. Rachael Ray’s Yogurt and Fruit Parfaits will fill you with protein and fiber without requiring you to fire up your griddle. If you have an abundance of fresh fruit on hand, try Ina Garten’s Fruit Salad with Limoncello; the silky lemon yogurt topping comes together in mere seconds.
Chefs’ Picks tracks down what the pros are eating and cooking from coast to coast.
Summer isn’t complete without the ultimate campground dessert: s’mores. But no ordinary combination of store-bought graham crackers, chocolate bars and marshmallows will do for the pros. Pastry chefs across the country are taking the snack staple up a notch with innovative riffs that still pull in those nostalgic flavors. These elevated desserts will leave you craving s’mores, whether or not you’re cozied up by a campfire.
Let’s be honest. Chicken noodle, broccoli-cheddar and minestrone are all well and good soups, but when it’s roughly 100 degrees outside, the last thing you want to do is cozy up to a bowl of piping-hot liquid, right? But what about chilled soup? It’s just as light and satisfying as its steamy counterparts, but you can enjoy it without all of that … steam. On this morning’s new Chill Out episode of The Kitchen, Jeff Mauro and Katie Lee showed two ways to indulge your craving for soup without sweating it out in the kitchen. The secret lies in their simple recipes for cold soups, both easy to make and full of summertime flavors.
The first medal events of the 2016 Rio Olympics kick off today. Whichever sport is your jam — be it swimming, cycling, soccer, gymnastics … the list goes on — it’s Team USA that we’re fired up to watch. Prep for a Summer Games viewing party with our favorite patriotic party foods, perfect for cheering on our nation’s athletes.
While the athletes are getting in the zone in Rio de Janeiro, why not toast to their athleticism in your own way: by fixing yourself a drink. Our Fireworks Red, White and Blue Daiquiri comes stacked with layers of red watermelon and strawberry, white coconut and blue curacao liqueur. Plus, these swigs are surprisingly healthy, so you deserve your own kind of medal for choosing them.
Though Alex Guarnaschelli is an esteemed Iron Chef and a tough-love Chopped judge with a reputation for excellence in the kitchen, many of her recipes are downright easy to make, like these top-rated summer picks. Check them all out below for sweet and savory seasonal inspiration.
Tomato and Watermelon Salad (pictured above)
Follow Alex’s lead and make this vibrant salad with room-temperature tomatoes and cold watermelon. “The contrast of temperatures will give the salad an extra-fresh taste,” she explains.