It’s a scorcher out there! We’re having record-breaking heat in many places around the country, plus wildfires and flooding.
Down here in Texas we’re accustomed to sweltering summers, but last year’s drought made things especially challenging, with triple-digit temperatures for most of July and August.
Fourth of July is rolling around next week, so people will probably leave their air-conditioned comfort for some fun outdoors –picnics, parades, fireworks shows. I thought it might be fun to share some of the recipes we use to help beat the summer heat. I hope these foods and beverages will help you stay cool despite the sizzling temps as you enjoy your Independence Day!
What are your plans for the Fourth of July? Leave a comment or a recipe for a chance to win a copy of my latest book TWISTED.
Chilled Watermelon Salad
Juice from two limes
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
pickled jalapeno, minced
Directions: Cube your watermelon in a large bowl. Add lime, cilantro, jalapeno. Chill at least 1 hour and serve.
* For a kid-friendly variation, skip the jalapeno and cilantro and use fresh mint instead.
12 oz. beer (I prefer a Mexican brand, like Dos Equis)
juice from one lemon
dash of Worcestershire sauce
dash of Tabasco
dash of soy
Pinch of black pepper
Directions: Rim the glass with salt. Pour beer over ice and add other ingredients. Stir and enjoy!
Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream
2 1/4 c. sugar
1/4 c. plus 2 T. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
5 c. milk
4 beaten eggs
4 c. whipping cream
2 T. vanilla extract (I like Madagascar vanilla)
Directions: combine sugar, flour and salt in a large saucepan. Gradually stir in milk. Cook over medium heat approx. 15 minutes until thick, stirring constantly. Gradually add about 1 cup of the hot mixture to the beaten eggs (you don’t want to cook the eggs). Then add egg mixture to the remaining hot mixture, stirring. Cook about 1 minute and remove from heat. Refrigerate mixture for 2 hours (skim off any cooked egg with a spoon if you see any). After 2 hours, add whipping cream and vanilla to chilled mixture, stir, and freeze as directed using your ice cream freezer.
This ice cream is delicious with crushed Oreos on top or fresh fruit. Enjoy!