Cool food for hot nights

May 20, 2024

Cool food for hot nights

The forecast is for a long, hot summer and as the mercury rises, so does the challenge of creating a refreshing and appealing menu that satisfies and cools your guests.

When planning your summer menu, be sure to use seasonal ingredients that offer freshness and hydration. Think water-rich fruits like watermelon and citrus, fresh salads with crisp vegetables, and light proteins like chicken or fish. Chicken or fish salads with a tangy vinaigrette can make for a satisfying yet light main course.

If you're seeking specific inspiration, consider Mediterranean or Southeast Asian dishes. These cuisines are known for their use of fresh ingredients, bold flavors, and a balance of textures that can offer a refreshing dining experience.

Appetites tend to decrease in hot weather, so presentation also plays a greater role in making your dishes appealing.

Use vibrant colours that reflect the season, and experiment with unique plating techniques.

Remember the importance of safety during a heat wave. High temperatures can increase the risk of food spoilage, so it's important to store food properly and keep a close eye on refrigeration units. Regular staff training on food safety protocols can also help prevent any foodborne illnesses.

You’ll also want to make sure your venue is well-ventilated and cool with a cross breeze or air conditioning inside and shaded seating outside. And always have plenty of cold water freely available for guests.

Remember, the key is to ensure the whole dining experience is light, fresh, and cool — just like a perfect summer night.

Try these recipes:

Spicy Prawns with Sesame, Cucumber and Carrot Salad

Combine ribbons of fresh and pickled vegetables in a miso dressing and top them with spicy crunchy prawns and a sprinkle of sesame seeds.


Plant Based Chicken and Freekeh Salad

This light salad caters to the growing number of vegetarian and vegan diners, using delicious plant-based chicken.


Loaded Hummus

Nothing says summer more than sharing a light plate with friends. This Loaded Hummus recipe is a modern take on the traditional Middle Eastern dish.


Salt & Pepper Squid With Tropical Mango Salad

Juicy cucumber and fresh rocket and mint combine to make the sweetness of in season mango pop, in this deceptively light and simple seafood salad.


San Choy Bau

Crisp and refreshing lettuce cups form the base of this simple Chinese-style dish with stir fried plant-based mince, vegetables and water chestnuts.