July 11, 2012

Summer Food and a Tip

Our family doesn't do grilling very well. Soon as summer comes I have huge dilemmas for cooking meals and dreaming of the cooler months to cook more hearty things. I look at other blogs and see beautiful summer dishes, and yet I walk away uninspired for some reason. We have probably used our outdoor grill maybe three times this season. For the fourth of July, we grilled these ribs though! Nothing too tricky, since baking them the day before for three hours, made grilling a snap, since you just finish them off on the grill. My poor husband always gets an interrogation every time he comes in with the items that have been on the grill." Are you sure it is cooked," I always ask him. He gets annoyed, and then I say, "I hate grilling!" I feel like things are never cooked right on them, and we never practice enough to get that great at it. Plus I'm always leery of eating too many BBQ things and possible ingestion of carcinogens. I know, I'm crazy, but that is the way it is. We are also a small family, so firing up the grill for three hamburgers is kind of a joke, when you can do it on a stove top grill, without all the fuss.
I'm rambling I know, sorry....but this is what is on my mind most days, as I try and decide what to cook for dinner every night, especially since it is now our turn for the triple digits! I eat a salad everyday for lunch, so the thought of eating a salad for dinner as well, is not appealing to me.
I wish I had more ideas for the summer months. What are some of your favorite things to fix for the hot months?
A tip for the day. Are you tired of buying these little cans of tomato paste, for only one to two tablespoons? I have literally tossed out nearly full cans, after they have sat in the fridge with plastic wrap around them. I then started buying the tomato paste in a tube, kind of like toothpaste, and thought that solved all my problems. Did you know that once you open that tube, it is only good for two weeks tops!!! Those sat in there too. Yesterday, I decided to try this......
I bought this silicone ice tray at Ikea a while back. I measured how much each heart could hold, and it was exactly one tablespoon! I filled as many as I could, then froze them over night.......
Look! Cute little tomato paste hearts!!! I then put them in a freezer bag, and now I can just use them as I need them.

Today I'm cutting out two more summer pieces for the shop, and then I think I better set my sights on fall sewing. Yesterday, I sat in my sewing room not really knowing what to add next. I think I finally have come up with a cute idea, and hope to share this with you soon.

Stay cool friends!


  1. We are not grillers. I have never figured out why folks think it is a "cooler" way to go in summer. I just crank down the ac and heat up the oven. That said, we do prefer cooler dishes--hardy salads and cold soups work well.

    I didn't know that about the tubes of tomato paste. I've kept and used them for months and they were o.k.. I do like your method as it's far cheaper and insures freshness.


  2. I also freeze my tomato paste by the tablespoon after opening a can. They're not heart-shaped though - yours are pretty awesome!

  3. Brits like to bbq but the weather and skills are sadly lacking, on arrival in W.c. in a couple of weeks time I am sure grilling will feature at some time .

  4. I may have to make my paste "cubes" in the shape of snowmen as I have a silicone ice cube tray with that shape that will do the trick - I think this is a GREAT idea ... Not only because the paste doesn't go bad, but it is one less can/jar/bottle in the fridge. I hate it when it gets all cluttered in there. Great tip!

  5. We are grillers here. My husband would eat grilled food daily!
    During the summer we have sandwiches, cold pasta dishes with veggies, breakfast foods and of course the grilled goodies.

    Take care.