With summer here and the weather getting hotter, there's a good chance that there is very little difference between the temperature inside your oven and inside your kitchen. When looking for menu ideas for a hot summer day, you should keep in mind that cooking the night before when the temperature is lower or even not cooking at all are both very good options.
Keep Your Cool
One way of outsmarting the heat is to cook your food at night when the temperature is more accommodating. One recipe that is famously fabulous as a next day meal is fried chicken. It is true that when it's hot outside, the idea of standing over oil hot enough to fry a chicken in might not seem like a fun time. But, if cooked in the cool of the evening and kept in the refrigerator overnight, cold fried chicken will be a great idea for dinner the next day.
Along the same lines you can cook up some falafel. In fact, you might want to fry them both up at the same time and then you would have dinner for two nights.
Get out of the Kitchen
When thinking up menu ideas for hot summer days, keep in mind that a crock pot can do the cooking for you while you are out enjoying the sunshine. Making ratatouille in a crock pot is a great way to have dinner waiting for you when you get home and you can avoid the hot kitchen while it's cooking.
Another way to avoid the kitchen is to cook your food outside. Some menu ideas for hot summer days that can be cooked outside include grilled leg of lamb and BBQ chicken.
Don't Even Cook
You can cover just about every part of your menu without even turning on your oven or stove. Starting with shrimp cocktail, oyster shooters, salsa, hummus, Greek salad, Waldorf salad, 7 layer salad, and even ambrosia can be made without cranking the heat.
Some desserts, like no bake cookies or chocolate Marquise, can be made with little or no cooking involved.
Menu Ideas for Hot Summer Days
Be sure to include side dishes like Hawaiian macaroni potato salad and macaroni salad. A few beverages will always help keep you cool like a frozen drink recipe or a nice margarita.