Raita: Just as winter is a great time for one-pot recipes where you can throw something on the stove and forget about it, summer (in my mind) is a time for dips. Whereas we might curl up for warmth in the winter and man-spread on the porch in the summer, we likewise let our flavors combine in our winter stews and keep things rather separate in the summertime. And to this notion, cucumbers pull double duty as a food you can dip while cooling your body with its high water content. According to Chinese Medicine (and Men's Journal) there are warming foods which boost circulation and cooling foods which help, "clear heat and remove toxins from the body." I happen to like my cucumbers with hummus but on the topic of "double duty," why not make a dip with cucumbers themselves? The raita above will keep you cool as a cucumber...
Salsa: Following the theme of dips, we come to one of my summer favorites... salsa. I'm a huge fan of salsa... probably because I'm a big fan of sauces which is technically what "salsa" means. In the recipe above, the cooling power of tomatoes is contrasted with the fact that they're roasted... taking out a little more water and adding a little more flavor. Of course, you could always make salsa fresca without the heat (link here) or, put those tomatoes to good use in a gazpacho.
Melon-Mango Yogurt: In Mylking It More, I tried to make (n)ice creams that maintained the consistency of something normal people would eat... but to little avail. Before my ice creams went in the freezer, they generally maintained the consistency of yogurt (if I was lucky). And so, while I attempted to make a melon-mango ice cream, I simply settled on melon-mango yogurt in order to save you the extra step of freezing. Like their cousin the cucumber, honeydew melons can cool you on a summer's day while adding a bit of sweetness to your routine. To make the yogurt above, place the following in a blender:
101 Cookbooks: Summer Zucchini Recipes: Just like her salsa linked above, Heidi Swanson elevates this summer star by mixing it into a Thai soup or lets it shine with pasta. Either way, she makes use of the summer's bounty and the ingredient itself (as part of the melon family) will do your body good too.
Cucumber-Cantaloupe Salad: "Keep it in the family," they say. This salad, utilizing both melon and cucumber does just that and like the salsa above, provides the opportunity to use some cilantro as well (my favorite)... see Aromatherapy.
Watermelon-Feta Salad: I saw a funny cartoon on Instagram a few days ago which featured trendy foods within the past few years. As watermelon-feta salad was all the rage back in 2013, I suppose the recipe above is a little passe but, featuring the biggest member of the melon family, this salad is sure to cool you in the heat of summer.