The thought of staying in doors on these beautiful summer days to cook a meal that is likely to overheat you is not a fun concept. The developer of those 30-min meal recipes had a sure hitter on their hands when it comes to sticky summer months. The quick solution might be to crank up the AC, but here in Italy that isn’t really an option. Not only do most apartments and houses not have central heating and cooling, but electricity is fairly expensive making conservation key. So instead of polarizing the cultural differences, I’ve decided to mix them. Below is a quick dinner idea that I compiled from the Better Homes and Gardens website. Minimal time in the kitchen, less overheating, and makes great leftovers!
Fast Chicken and Rice: This 10 min chicken and rice recipe has some flavors that definitely liven up the traditional concept. Stir-fry sauce, almonds, peas, and peanuts add loads of taste and crunch. It is hard to find ready made rice pouches like those sold in the U.S., so Italians beware! you will have to add on an additional 15 min for the time it takes to boil the rice. Tasty, quick, and total frig friendly.
No Recipe Dessert Nachos: There may not be a recipe, but there is a slight rubric. Use tortillas, or for us in Italy, find the thinest kind of piadina. These tend to be the refrigerated type. From there is just a matter of coating the tortillas with melted butter on one side, then sprinkling cinnamon and sugar over the butter. Bake till crispy. Then chose the types of fruit, nuts, and yogurt you want to top them off with.
And to drink? White Wine Sangria: I know most sangria lovers out there would probably be appalled by this considering sangria is a traditional red wine drink, however I think the white would ties together the dinner and dessert recipe better than the red. My only 2 cents of advice on this one: instead of using 2 trays of cubes, use one, and freeze the fruit before adding it in with the alcohol mix. The frozen fruit will work like ice cubes, but without the unwanted watering down effect.
This easy meal suggestion is simple to follow and time conscious. No long hours slow cooking chicken, or waiting for baked goods to finish before opening the oven and flooding your kitchen with unwanted heat. They are also ingredient easy. All ingredients listed can be found rather effortlessly in Italy making fusion food less of a hassle for all us expats! Buon Appetito!