Healthy and Refreshing Summer Recipes - Christmas Tree Market Blog

Healthy and Refreshing Summer Recipes

August 5th, 2014

Summer is the time for outdoor fun, but with the sun out in full force, it’s extremely important to keep your body temperature in check. Sodas and ice cream may give quick relief from the sweltering weather, but what your body really needs is the deep-cooling that select foods and beverages provide.

Here are some of my favorite summer recipes. They not only taste delicious, but also help you stay cool when the heat goes up

Spicy Fish Tacos with Summer Salsa

This may seem counter-intuitive, but eating spicy food during hot weather actually makes you feel cooler. The spicy ingredients in the food raises your body body temperature, making the
surrounding air temperature feel cooler.

Fish Tacos with Summer Salsa is a great seasonal food that helps you cool down (while heating up the palate!). This protein-rich dish only takes about 30 minutes to prepare. The filling and salsa can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge.

To make the salsa, squeeze the juice and flesh of whole tomatillos into a bowl. With the skins discarded, mash the tomatillos with a fork and add cubed zucchini, juice from one lime, chopped cilantro, and two teaspoons of salt, then mix.

To make the taco filling, drizzle lime juice on your fish. Any white, flakey fish would do, but I prefer cod or halibut. Cover the fish and refridgerate for 15 minutes. With your oven heated to 225 degrees, remove the fish from the lime juice, pat dry and cover with spice rub. Your spice rub will be a mixture of 2 tablespoons chili powder, 1/4 tablespoon cayenne pepper and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Heat the olive oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat and cook the fish for about 4 minutes on each side. Break the fish into bite-size pieces and season to taste with salt.

Warm the tortillas in the oven. Fill the tortillas with the fish and salsa. Garnish with avocado slices. Serve hot!

Corn and Wholegrain Pasta

Most whole grains contain magnesium, which relaxes muscles and nerves. Relaxation helps maintain a constant body temperature— a useful benefit, when trying to keep cool. Corn is also rich in magnesium, so let’s prepare a refreshing corn and tomato whole-grain pasta. You’ll need the following ingredients:

• 3 pieces of fresh corn, shredded
• 2 garlic cloves, smashed
• 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
• 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
• 1 pound whole grain pasta
• 1 pint cherry tomatoes
• 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, tear to pieces
• Salt

Cook the pasta in a pot of salted water until al dente, then drain. In another pot, sauté the garlic and tomatoes in olive oil. Leave on medium to low heat for five minutes, then mix corn kernels. Turn up the heat a bit and simmer until the corn is cooked and soft. Mix the vegetables, butter and basil with the pasta. You can give the dish a fancy twist by adding some lobster or shrimp.

Cucumber and Melon White Mocktail

When it comes to cooling down, spicy and magnesium-rich foods help, but nothing does the trick like a tall, refreshing glass of fresh juice. Water-rich ingredients, such as the fruits and vegetables used in the Cucumber and Melon White mocktail help fight the heat. With its reduced sugar and abundance of fresh fruit and leafy greens, this tasty yet healthy cocktail will be a popular choice for kids and adults alike. Here are the ingredients you’ll need to create this concoction:

• 2 cups honeydew melon, diced
• 1 cup cucumber, diced
• 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, torn
• 1 cup plain seltzer, chilled
• Ice

Put the melon, cucumber, and basil in a large pitcher filled with water. Refrigerate for about four hours, or until cold. Stir the seltzer into the pitcher just before pouring into a tall glass. Makes up to six nutritious servings. You can also replace the honeydew melon with other sweet fruits, if you prefer.

Try these healthy and refreshing recipes, and stay cool during the summer!

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