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Simple summer recipes: Finger foods for the deck during the dog days of summer

Simple treats for the dog days of summer: Dog days of summer
Simple treats for the dog days of summer: Dog days of summer

When the temperatures starts to rise and the dog days of summer are in full swing, you want easy cool summertime recipes without using the oven or stove. There are lots of summer salad recipes out there, but how about some light finger foods that won’t weigh you down on those endless summer nights?

Cool treat for the dog days of summer
Turtles and Tails

The following recipes have minimal ingredients and/or not real time consuming to prepare. Make a plate of several different finger foods with a nice glass of wine or a big pitcher of lemonade, then sit on the deck and enjoy the evening sunset.

The timeless classic: Cucumber sandwich

This easy recipe can be made in less than ten minutes. Mix an 8 oz. packages of whipped cream cheese with a .7 oz. envelope of dry Italian dressing. Cut up a cucumber thinly as well as a loaf of French bread (or use square shaped party bread). Spread cream cheese mixture on a slice of bread and pop a cucumber on top. It’s easy, light and flavorful.

A winner every time: Crescent club bars

Once again very easy and this one is nice because you use what you already have for toppings. Roll out a tube of seamless crescent roll dough into a small cookie sheet or jelly roll pan and bake as directed. Let it cool completely. Now mix an envelope of dry ranch with sour cream (as directed on ranch mix envelope). Spread this over the cooled bread. Sprinkle with cold left over (or canned) chicken. Now have fun! Topping can include: cucumbers, bacon, green peppers, tomatoes, onions, cut up pork chops instead of chicken, cheese, and the list is endless. Cut into squares and enjoy this light but filling meal.

Something unique: Salami chips and dip

You take some thinly sliced salami (I’m sure pepperoni would work too) and bake it in the oven for toaster oven at 375* for 10-15 minutes. Basically until is crisp. Mix a ¼ cup Dijon mustard (or honey mustard) with 1 Tbsp. of chopped fresh thyme. A crunchy evening snack packed with flavor.

You have to try this salad: Corn and avocado salad

Cut the kernels off of three ears of corn. In a medium bowl, toss corn with 1 pitted and sliced avocado, 2 thinly sliced scallions, 1 Tbs. olive oil, salt, and pepper. The flavors blend so nicely and a little bowl of this salad will be light and very satisfying to your taste buds.

Easy summer dessert: Fruit cobbler

Use fresh, canned or frozen fruit. Place fruit in the bottom of a baking dish. Sprinkle a box of cake mix (yellow versions work well) over the fruit. Dot or drizzle with butter. All that’s left is to bake the cobbler at 350* until it is golden brown. The only way to improve this recipe is to add a scoop of ice cream!

We are in for a hot summer and the last thing you want to do after a long day at work, is to work for another hour in the kitchen. You can even make most of these out on the deck if you have some sort of prep station out there! Stay cool during the dog days of summer with light foods that won't leave you feeling bloated and blah.


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