Tuesday, July 24, 2012

How I Keep the Kitchen Cool in the Summer


Now there's an old fashioned hood for you. I love it and it cleans up so nicely with my alcohol and water cleaner. It is a great degreaser. Okay, I am digressing as this is a post about cooking and summer. How I try to keep the kitchen as cool as possible in the summer.

1. Probably the most important rule of cooking in the summer, outside of eating out, is to cook early in the day. The kitchen has time to cool off before the heat of the day. I will cook my meat for supper and sides too and then reheat in the microwave when it is dinner time.

2. Grill baby grill. Fire up that barbecue. It may be a little hot for the cook but it sure keeps the house cooler. I will cook an entire meal outside when I can. Also, cook the meat for two meals at one time. We might say grill burgers but I will have hubby grill some chicken for fajitas or tacos the next night.

3. Use up your leftovers. Then nothing has to be cooked at all that day. Maybe a quick reheat in the microwave is all. Tonight I pulled out leftover spaghetti, two grilled chicken breasts which were turned into a loaded chef's salad and some leftover watermelon. Waa-laa perfect supper for summer.

4. Use your slow cooker. I use it all the time in the summer. You can cook an entire meal in there like my Supper in a Dish. Add a side salad or some fruit salad and you are done. You can find more ideas on my
recipes page.

5. Eat lots of salads. Summer is the perfect time for big, full of good stuff salads like my favorite, taco salad. I cook it all year long but it is perfect for hot days.

6. And lastly, this is a tip I learned from my mother in law. When using your stove, run your overhead vent. It helps to draw up the heat and steam from whatever you may be cooking. I swear this really works. Helps to cut down on the heat


30 comments:

marejohn said...

GREAT hot weather tips! Also, as a side note, I am in LOVE with your tile behind your stove! :)
I appreciate you linking to your recipes..I think we all get in a rut and new (to us)ideas are the best!
Stay cool!

It's All Connected said...

Great tips! I'm a big fan of cooking meat for two days at once and do that year round as a hydro saver. ~ Maureen

Leslie said...

Good advice, Elaine! I'm trying to do what I can to stay cool and keep the electic bill down...at least a little!! :)
I'm glad you stopped by and liked the chocolate bars. I bet your kids would, too!
Blessings,
Leslie

Muddy Boot Dreams said...

Thanks for the great tips, they are definitely needed this time of year.

I was reading another blog with advice on how to keep your house cool during the heat wave, and they mentioned using the fan over the stove too.

It really does make a difference!

Thanks,

Jen @ Muddy Boot Dreams

Lottie said...

Great tips! I've been trying to cook two meals at a time to cut down on cooking. Also, eating right out of the garden has been great, too!

Barbara F. said...

These are great tips, Elaine. Now I am off to check out your links! Stay cool!! xo

Donna said...

So many great ideas! Thanks!

Ann@A Sentimental Life said...

It is so hot here we can not even grill out! We have been eating alot of salads, tomato, chicken and tuna salad!

laurie said...

great tips and that Taco Salad is great, I used your recipe and everyone loved it!!Thankyou for that!!!

Chenille Cottage said...

Hi Elaine!
You are such a wealth of great ideas...What simple and practical tips for keeping the kitchen comfy in the summer.
I, especially, like the summer salads suggestion. With all the fresh produce available...It's, also, economical.
Thank you for your thoughtful comment on my blog. I had a feeling you would like my RED cupboard. I have collected blue dishes for many years...Some are treasures from my husbands trips overseas, some are gifts from friends and family...and, many are thrift shop finds. I'm not a "label" shopper at all. "If it's pretty and inexpensive" is always my motto.
I hope you have a great day, my friend!
Carolynn xo

Honey at 2805 said...

Grill is right! Nice list, and I have something to add!

I use my large electric turkey roaster plugged in outside. It is absolutely amazing how many things it can be used for, thus eliminating heating up the house by turning on the oven!

Kathleen said...

What a great list of tips! I just pinned you homemade cleaner page

Corn in my Coffee-Pot said...

Good ideas for sure!

I use my vent hood when I'm cooking in the heat of summer.
I like the grilling idea...it is really nice when there is a shade and breeze too.

stay cool...Pat

Precious said...

I try not to turn on my stove and oven all summer. I use small appliances outdoors on the patio and the grill as much as possible. Some times I have no choice but to use the stove but that doesn't happen very often.

Cozy Little House said...

You have the best and most frugal ideas, Elaine!
Brenda

Olive Cooper said...

I am all about the slow cooker too Elaine. I also keep my kitchen dark and we have a ceiling fan.

Betty@SouthernGrace said...

I've been using my crockpot all week too. Just too hot to cook!
~betty

Linda @ A La Carte said...

Elaine this is great advice. Some things I hadn't thought of. I do use my slow cooker in the summer for sure! hugs, Linda

NanaDiana said...

Great hot weather tips. I use my slow cooker all summer, too. We are big salad eaters, too. xo Diana

Jann Olson said...

Love those cherries Elaine. I hardly use the oven when it's hot. We grill just about everything. I agree, lighter meals for summer are so much more tasty. Love garden fresh veggies steamed, BBQ'd and just straigt off the vine.
Hugs,
Jann

Barb said...

Hi Elaine,
Good summer tips.
My Hubby BBQs all the time in summer. He closes the lid and bakes meat and veges in the BBQ as well.
We keep our house as dark as possible even though this drives me crazy...I love light.
WE use reflective (mylar) curtains to keep the heat out in summer and the heat in, in winter.
Thanks for the taco salad recipe.
Have a good week
Barb from Australia

Shelley said...

Great tips...many I use myself. I must try that alcohol cleanser.
Blessings

Daniela @Frugal Aint Cheap said...

I love to bake...but during the summer I hardly turn the oven on!!! WAY too hot!

Tammy ~ Country Girl at Home ~ said...

Good morning Elaine,

Wonderful tips! I pretty much follow them all except the vent-a-hood. Good idea! It's so humid and hot for even grilling out here, but I do use my George Foreman here in the house...burgers in less than 4 minutes! :) And thank the Lord for left-overs!

Have a wonderful Wednesday!
Tammy

Angela said...

{Good to know about the alcohol as a degreaser.} As for keeping the kitchen cool, when I do have to use the oven, I bake as much as I can while it's going. Good post!

trish said...

These are great suggestions. Tonight we are having chicken soft tacos and the only thing needing to be cooked is the chicken. But since I cut it in small pieces it is more like a quick stir fry. :0) Because we run our ac down here in the south I try to put out as much laundry on those dry days. They are done in no time and only need a quick air fluff for softness. :0)

Erika Marsh said...

Very helpful! and I would have to say we do all things on your list. Def. lots of salads in the summer! :) Please come hang out and link up to our link party "Home is Where the Heart is" Please feel free to link up any posts you might want to share! :)
http://www.homesteadsimple.com/home-is-where-the-heart-is-link-it-up-wednesdays-3/

Ronald John Neal said...

Helpful tips for home-keeping. Imagine a very warm summer. That day will be ordeal as you struggle to keep yourself warm. Summer is also the time to do fixes such as the
Flooring Norfolk floor renovation or roofing fixing.

Tammy Partin Spangler said...

Great tips! Another thing I do is use my electric roaster, it also bakes!

Pam - @diy Design Fanatic said...

I grew up in SoCal and remember my mom cooking rotisserie chicken outside on hot summer days.She had a countertop oven that she'd put on the large window air conditioner outside the living room and ran a cord through the window. A window fan facing out also works to draw cool air through the house. Now that I live in the South, I just have to rely on the AC since you can't open a window to cool off with all that humidity!

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