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Old 08-07-2007, 04:18 PM   #21
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Today's predicted temps for Culpeper, VA, were 101 with a heat index of 110. Same is predicted for the next few days. Even with a/c, it does dampen one's enthusiasm for cooking.

My plans for this type of weather involve as little as possible - lol!! Lots of shrimp - which I have the market steam for me (why the heck should I cook them when the store does it for free??), which we have chilled with cocktail sauce or turned into shrimp salad & served on toasted rolls.

I also like poaching some boneless skinless chicken breasts & turning them into chicken salad with grapes & walnuts served over greens. A nice loaf of some artisinal bread makes it a meal.

Pasta is also great, so long as the sauce is light. No heavy meat sauces - just veggies &/or seafood.

And while I don't use a lot of processed food, a taco "kit" makes terrific ground turkey tacos with all the trimmings. Fast & good eating.

Another hot-weather favorite? Salmon loaf using canned salmon. Served at room temp or chilled with tartar sauce (or hot with Hollandaise), it makes a great dinner, & the leftovers make great sandwiches.
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Old 08-07-2007, 04:40 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Bob
I've looked at these "ductless" models, but for my purpose (to create a cool zone during emergency, extened power outages) they are pricey back up systems. A small to medium (window) room A/C would have been heaven during Katrina!! I want get caught again. I don't think!!

I better get a move on............
Iíd use a window unit too....much cheaper, but many people donít like the look of them. Iíve lived in worse, so a window unit wonít kill me.

You mention extended power outage and AC in the same sentence? Are you using a generator when the power fails?
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Old 08-07-2007, 05:45 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kelton
You mention extended power outage and AC in the same sentence? Are you using a generator when the power fails?


Yeah buddy!!! 3 of them. One(can be) tied into the house. 2 portable for smaller needs, and out building with refrigerator and freeze. Down on the bayou you have a generator(s) before you buy a TV
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Old 08-07-2007, 06:13 PM   #24
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When it's really hot, we have chicken salad sandwiches like those from Jason's Deli (with pineapple and toasted almond slivers) with a good can or jar of soup, such as La Madeleine Tomato Basil and maybe a bowl of chilled fresh fruit or berries. Thankfully, if I serve at least one thing that is hot, even if it's just store bought soup, my kids think it's a yummy dinner.

As far as the A/C, I'm surprised to learn so many of you have old houses, too. When I lived in MA, we didn't have A/C but it was really only miserably hot a few weeks a year so it didn't justify the expense of trying to install it in a 100 yr. old house. Here, my house is only 85 years old and has central A/C upstairs. I guess it was too hard to try and re-wire and find places for ducting in the downstairs. Still, it was designed for Texas heat so it has wide, low overhanging eaves, lots of tall trees and a basement that stays quite cool. I've lusted over the A/C units you pictured, keltin, for my un-airconditioned kitchen, but I'd have to deal with the whole re-wiring issue. So for now, it's soup & sandwiches or cook naked in the summer!
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Old 08-07-2007, 06:18 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fisher's Mom
As far as the A/C, I'm surprised to learn so many of you have old houses, too. When I lived in MA, we didn't have A/C but it was really only miserably hot a few weeks a year so it didn't justify the expense of trying to install it in a 100 yr. old house. Here, my house is only 85 years old and has central A/C upstairs. I guess it was too hard to try and re-wire and find places for ducting in the downstairs. Still, it was designed for Texas heat so it has wide, low overhanging eaves, lots of tall trees and a basement that stays quite cool. I've lusted over the A/C units you pictured, keltin, for my un-airconditioned kitchen, but I'd have to deal with the whole re-wiring issue. So for now, it's soup & sandwiches or cook naked in the summer!
My house was built in 1910 and we just had central A/C put in the downstairs last summer. We have a crawl space, so all the ducting is under the house. Then we have one window unit on the staircase landing that takes care of the bedrooms upstairs. I'm so much happier now
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Old 08-07-2007, 06:22 PM   #26
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I'm with you, GotGarlic. To heck with diamonds, give me A/C any day!
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Old 08-07-2007, 06:24 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fisher's Mom
When it's really hot, we have chicken salad sandwiches like those from Jason's Deli (with pineapple and toasted almond slivers) with a good can or jar of soup, such as La Madeleine Tomato Basil and maybe a bowl of chilled fresh fruit or berries. Thankfully, if I serve at least one thing that is hot, even if it's just store bought soup, my kids think it's a yummy dinner.
Oh do I LOVE Jason's Deli, it is a must stop whenever I am in the Dallas area. When we have extreme heat like we are experiencing right now, I don't feel like grilling. Its like grilling in an oven, terribly hot. I hadn't considered using the crockpot to make dinner, but I'm gonna haul that sucker out.

Someone asked the question about where you could live with no A/C - visited Boone NC last July and slept with the windows open - no humidity, breezy and cool at night. I couldn't believe how comfortable it was.
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Old 08-07-2007, 06:39 PM   #28
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Thank heavens we have an excellent cooling system. I'm taking a couple of medications that make me extra sensitive to the heat, so I don't stick my head out the door if I don't have to.
I do remember those nights when the sheets were soaking wet with sweat, though, and the times when I was so hot by the time I got supper fixed that I didn't feel like eating it.

Our electric rates have soared here, and I sure don't want my kitchen stove battling the AC, so I use my crock-pot and microwave a lot. Although DH likes the charcoal grill better, we do have a gas grill right outside the dining room door on a shady deck, so we can also use that.

We don't crave heavy foods in weather like this, whether we have to be out in the heat or not. We eat a lot of salads (all kinds), sandwiches, and casseroles that I can do in the microwave. If DH cooks something on the grill, he fills it up so we'll have meat for several nights.

By the way, did you know you can make excellent garlic bread in a skillet?
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Old 08-07-2007, 07:19 PM   #29
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All I can say , is if we can fill our tummy's is what counts - no matter what it is ! There's always tomorrow and cooler weather on its way.
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Old 08-07-2007, 10:02 PM   #30
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I, too, live in an old home (1854); have lived here 6 years. Most of the time our very hot weather is about a month long (a day or two here and there before then, then a good solid month -- which we are in the middle of). We have window A/C units in the rooms where we relax; our master bedroom and the family room, and then one in the guest room. I don't like them much (noisy and ugly), but do need to sleep at night. The kitchen is of course the hottest room. Retrofitting an old house with A/C is prohibitive, but those mitsubishi units look good. Maybe when we start collecting SS to supplement our income.

But the original question. Grilling out aside, I shorten a lot of cooking times by what I call pre-nuking. I'll cook items in the microwave until "almost done", then finish on the stove or in the oven in minutes, although I rarely do use the oven. Then there is the opposite. I tend to wake early, and work in the kitchen before it gets too hot -- cook pasta for pasta salads, stuff like that; or cook things to nuke at dinner time. I also do laundry then (as in many old homes, the downstairs bath and laundry facilities are off the kitchen). By the heat of the day, I try to be through with my hottest jobs and sitting in front of the family room (actually, it is the back parlor, as opposed to the "formal" front parlor) window A/C unit.

Lots of fans help.

Lots of salads. I'll never forget meeting people when I was younger ... the husbands had to have a hot, meat-and-potatoes meal every night. Thank heaven my husband is thrilled with a salad nicoise, Greek salad, Cobb, or something of my own creation.

Near East couscous and taboule packages are very simple. Pour hot water over them in the morning, and by dinner you have a cool, refreshing base for many hearty cool meals.
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