Hobby Farms Editors
July 3, 2012
Keep cool on July 4 with quinoa-cake appetizers topped with a cooling tomato-cucumber salsa. Photo by Rachael Brugger (HobbyFarms.com)
Photo by Rachael Brugger
Keep cool on July 4 with quinoa-cake appetizers topped with a cooling tomato-cucumber salsa.

This summer, farms across the U.S. have already experienced record-high temperatures. Even if your crops are looking parched, it’s important to take care of yourself, especially if you’ll be spending long days outside. Natural foods chef Amanda Skrip recommends these four food-preparation tips to keep you cool and hydrated. (Maybe you can even work them into an Independence Day dish!)

1. Use water-dense fruits.
Produce like watermelon, cucumbers, radishes and leafy greens are packed with water, which will quench your thirst and keep you hydrated.  They are low in calories, easy to digest and rich in anti-oxidants. 

Preparation tip: Add cucumber or melon to a pitcher of water for extra flavor, or use freshly cut crudité to dip into spreads and salsas.

Recipes to try:

2. Incorporate citrus fruits.
Lemons, limes, oranges and grapefruits are some of the most cooling fruits available.  Like the water-dense fruits mentioned above, they aid in digestion and help break down fatty foods. 

Preparation tips: Use citrus fruits to make salad dressings, or squeeze the juice onto plain veggies.  Add lemon or lime to plain water to liven up the flavor and to get a mega dose of vitamin C. 

Recipes to try:

3. Pile on the herbs.
Herbs like mint, basil, cilantro and parsley have naturally cooling and soothing properties.  Their fresh flavor will liven your spirit as well as your plate! 

Preparation tip: Use fresh herbs in tossed salads, or blend them into smoothies. 

Recipes to try:

4. Spice up your meals.
Believe it or not, adding some heat to your next dish will help cool you down!  Spices like ginger, chilies, cayenne pepper and black pepper might make your mouth a little fiery, but they’ll help cool your body’s internal flame. 

Preparation tip: Grate fresh ginger into marinades, or sprinkle dried chili flakes on chicken or vegetables. 

Recipes to try:

 



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