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Old 07-03-2018, 05:41 PM   #1
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Do certain foods warm you up or cool you down?

msmofet's post in tonight's dinner thread got me to thinking of what we eat in hot weather and cold weather. She said "It's to hot to heat up kitchen. I can have soup, stew, pot roast anything I want during hot weather made in my Instant Pot.".

I'm glad for msm that she can enjoy those types of food in the summer. Me? My body thermostat is wired so that I need to put a sweater on if I eat ice cream on a hot day...while standing outside in that heat! My brain thinks of "summer meals" and "winter meals". So what do I feed us and when?

Summer:
- Dinner plate salads, like a Cobb or Chef salad.
- Tuna-egg-chicken salad, either along side tomatoes or as sandwiches.
- Grilled meats and fish. Still haven't had any this year because Himself is still fixing the grill and we think we can eek out one more year in hopes of moving back home and then buying a nice one.
- More salads, but versions that are heavily grain-based. I usually serve these aside grilled protein, but I'm going to have to make them our main feature if the above grill isn't fixed.
- Breakfast-for-supper, but that's good all year long.

Winter:
- Soups. The colder the temperatures, the heartier the soup.
- Stews.
- Roasts of all kinds.
- Slow cooker meals like pork and sauerkraut, sausages and kraut...pretty much anything that gets simmered in kraut.
- Hot pasta dishes like mac-and-cheese, spaghetti with a meat sauce. I have been known to sate a pasta craving in the summer, though, by fixing an alfredo sauce with lots of mushrooms. It doesn't seem to warm me like a red sauce.

OK, I think you get the idea. Do you tend to eat in a seasonal fashion, or do you chow down on whatever you like no matter what the temperatures?
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Old 07-03-2018, 06:19 PM   #2
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In my old town, there was a Chinese take out joint that had no air conditioning. During the summer months, the kitchen would get to 125°+. I know this because the takeout counter was at least 100°, so I asked the lady behind the counter how hot it was, and how they could stand it all day.

She showed me the tea they drank that she swore was their secret to being able to stand itthe heat. It was a pot of young bamboo stems and roots, and a few ginseng roots that were steeped, then served luke warm to all of the cooks throughout the day.

I wish that lady still worked there as I'd like to know more about it.
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Old 07-03-2018, 06:20 PM   #3
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Because this part of California has a Mediterranean Climate, extreme temperature changes rarely happen here. For that reason, I grill all year or cook stews and such as the mood strikes me.
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Old 07-03-2018, 06:36 PM   #4
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Lol, I wonder if people in the Mediterranean say their's is like California.

No one likes the dog days in the city here. It smells of urine, and hairy armpits.

With Manhattan being an island, you'd think there'd be a seabreeze.

It smells like old shellfish and salt.
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Old 07-03-2018, 06:46 PM   #5
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Lol, I wonder if people in the Mediterranean say their's is like California.

No one likes the dog days in the city here. It smells of urine, and hairy armpits.

With Manhattan being an island, you'd think there'd be a seabreeze.

It smells like old shellfish and salt.

I bet they do. Ventura county is a jewel except when the Devil Winds come in the Fall.


Ykies Bucky, remind me not to visit NYC in the summer!! I know for sure I could never handle both heat and humidity!
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Old 07-03-2018, 06:50 PM   #6
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Yes, summer tourism isn't our best.

But there's somethimg to be said about the other seasons. Spring and fall in Central park is special, and anywhere during a snowstorm is incredible. The usually busy streets are eerily empty. It's so weird and fun for a while, until they all come out
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Old 07-03-2018, 06:59 PM   #7
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For a brief moment I was hungry for a bowl of chili. Luckily I got over that thought pretty quickly.

In summer I like pasta type salads, and main dish salads.
I think a slice of lemon or cucumber in a glass of cold water is refreshing.
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Old 07-03-2018, 08:36 PM   #8
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...OK, I think you get the idea. Do you tend to eat in a seasonal fashion, or do you chow down on whatever you like no matter what the temperatures?
We eat differently according to the seasons.

While I grill all year long, it happens a lot less frequently in the colder months. In the summer, I'll also smoke foods on my Weber kettle. I try to do a pork butt later in the season so I can freeze some pulled pork for the colder months.

We eat a lot of tossed salads in the summer. So much so that I won't eat them in the cold weather months.

I enjoy cooking more in the colder weather as I like soups, stews, braises, skillet dinners and casseroles a lot. We rarely do that in the summer except for chili, which I can eat all year.

I have some roasts and a vacuum packed pair of veal shanks in the freezer I won't get to until Fall. Also about 6 quarts of chicken stock I made for soups and stews.

I stay away from pizza in the summer as it generates a lot of heat.
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Old 07-03-2018, 09:34 PM   #9
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In Egypt in high summer we found that hot tea (no milk but added mint leaves) was more refreshing and cooling than chilled drinks.
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Old 07-03-2018, 10:39 PM   #10
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Yes, summer tourism isn't our best.

But there's somethimg to be said about the other seasons. Spring and fall in Central park is special, and anywhere during a snowstorm is incredible. The usually busy streets are eerily empty. It's so weird and fun for a while, until they all come out
One year ago today, I was in Brooklyn... Red Hook, to be exact. It was very pleasant, to me. Back home in Dallas it was hot as... heck.

I've also been in NYC several times in December. Not really all that bad, as far as cold. And, you have the Macy's windows to gawk at.

As for the topic of this thread, foods... I eat a lot more veggies in the hot summer months. That and fresh fruits. I also have a different preference for beers in July than I do in January. In July, I want something light and refreshing. In January, I want something like a chocolate stout.

People in Latin American countries will often say that spicy foods are great in hot weather. I'm not sure I agree. If there is a pool I can jump into to cool off, yeah, bring the pepper heat.

To me, I don't want to eat a heavy, fatty meal in hot weather. I still like meat, but nothing heavy, like a stew. Kabobs that are 1/3 meat and 2/3 veggies is my kind of thing.

In winter, I don't want a salad. I want meat and potatoes kind of food.

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Old 07-03-2018, 10:41 PM   #11
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MC, my Dad stayed cool in the summer by drinking hot coffee, so I can believe that works with tea in Egypt. Dad must have known what he was talking about, since he delivered bread from what amounted to a rolling tin can, carrying trays with 24 loaves a bread back and forth from the hot truck to the small (and sometimes fan cooled) corner grocery stores, and never had heat exhaustion. Then again, the poor guy was usually exhausted anyway. He was a wonderful dad and hubby.

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We eat differently according to the seasons...
I stay away from pizza in the summer as it generates a lot of heat.
Seasonal eating is pretty much how I roll here, too. Andy, we've been cool and trendy before this modern "farm to table" trend.

Unlike you, I can't eat chili unless the high of the day is below 50 degrees. However, since I use packaged naan bread and my toaster oven (with two racks), I can make his-and-her pizzas, not heat the kitchen, and take care of my taste for pizza. It's on the menu this week - as soon as I get some mozzarella cheese.
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Old 07-03-2018, 10:49 PM   #12
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I can't eat chili unless the high of the day is below 50 degrees. However, since I use packaged naan bread and my toaster oven (with two racks), I can make his-and-her pizzas, not heat the kitchen, and take care of my taste for pizza. It's on the menu this week - as soon as I get some mozzarella cheese.
Chili and gumbo are two things I only cook in cold weather. I'll eat them any time, if that's what is put in front of me, but if the choice is mine, I cook them when it is cold outside.

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Old 07-04-2018, 10:54 AM   #13
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I will eat soup alot in the summer because it's a light meal. I can't handle a heavy lunch when it's hot. But them I'm usually hungry again by 3.
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Old 07-08-2018, 06:23 PM   #14
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When we first bought our house - before we had central air downstairs - I hated cooking anything hot during the summer. A neighbor told me his mother never turned on the oven between Memorial Day and Labor Day. That made a lot of sense to me! I still pretty much go by that. When I want to bake, though, now I do have air conditioning and also ceiling fans in every room except the bathroom and the foyer.

I don't like to make long-cooking soups, stews and braises during the summer, although I make and eat other hot foods during the summer. But there are so many fresh fruits and vegetables available from spring to fall that I want to have those as much as I can. Then I freeze or otherwise preserve the extra bounty from our garden to make those lovely long-cooking meals during the winter. And we have a smoker and a gas grill, so that helps.

So it's more about enjoying eating with the seasons than how certain meals make me feel.
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Old 07-08-2018, 08:46 PM   #15
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I was very hot and sticky when I got home from the stables and stopped off at the Co-op and picked up some ice cream - a tub of coconut and chocolate ice cream & one of mango & pineapple sorbet. When I got home I greedily scoffed half of each container (not as bad as it sounds - they were small containers!) for tea.

They certainly cooled me off.
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Old 07-08-2018, 09:46 PM   #16
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I started clicking "multi-quote" on so many of the posts - I had to give up!

Suffice it to say - I agree with a lot of you. Long cooking stews, etc. are not for summer fare due to heating up the kitchen, whether or not there is a/c. But a quick hi heat for a pastry is OK -

Watermelon and sorbet are two things that I find will really cool me almost instantly. Other than that... a meal is a meal - it is the prepping/cooking that makes the difference.

I was always told a hot drink can help cool you. Supposedly the reason being is that it would make you perspire and then as the liquid evaporated off your body you would feel cooler. Personally I just felt ... more sweaty.
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