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Cool Off with Hot Summer Fare

By Lisa LaFontaine Bynum

During the dog days of summer, it’s just too hot to turn on the oven. Go ahead and toss the oven mitts aside. These easy and delicious recipes require no cooking.

Strawberry Ice Cream Cake

  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted

  • 16 chocolate sandwich cookies plus more for garnish

  • 4 cups fresh strawberries, divided, stems removed

  • 2 cans (14 ounces each) sweetened condensed milk

  • 1/4 cup lemon juice

  • 2 tubs (8 ounces each) frozen whipped topping, thawed, divided

  1. Chop cookies or process in a food processor until they become coarse crumbs. Mix with melted butter.

  2. Line the bottom of a 9-inch spring form with aluminum foil. Lightly coat the bottom and sides with cooking spray.

  3. Spread the cookie mixture around the bottom of the pan. Press the mixture with your fingers or a flat-bottomed glass until the cookie layer is flat.

  4. Slice two cups of strawberries lengthwise. Gently arrange the sliced strawberries around the perimeter of the pan.

  5. Coarsely chop the remaining two cups of strawberries.

  6. Combine the strawberries and any juice with the condensed milk and lemon juice.

  7. Gently fold in one tub of the frozen whipped topping.

  8. Carefully pour the strawberry mixture into the pan over the cookie crust. Smooth the strawberry mixture out with a spatula.

  9. Freeze for six hours or until the strawberry mixture is frozen solid.

  10. Remove the pan from freezer and spread half of the remaining tub of frozen whipped topping over the top. Garnish with additional chopped chocolate sandwich cookies. Place the dessert back in the freezer and freeze for an additional hour.

  11. Allow the dessert to sit at room temperature for about five minutes before serving to soften enough to cut. Remove the outer ring from the springform pan. Cut into equal slices and serve.

Bourbon Slush

  • 2 cups sweet tea, homemade or store bought

  • 1 cup lemonade

  • 2 1/2 cups orange juice

  • 2 cups pineapple juice

  • 2 cups bourbon

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the tea, lemonade, orange juice, pineapple juice and bourbon.

  2. Pour the mixture into a 9 x 13 x 2-inch casserole dish.

  3. Place the container in the freezer for eight hours until firm.

  4. 15 minutes before serving, remove the dish from the freezer. Scrape the frozen liquid with a fork, then scoop individual servings

into glasses.

BLT Wedge Salad with Buttermilk Blue Cheese Dressing

For the salad:
  • 1 head iceberg lettuce, cut into quarters (eighths if the head is large)

  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

  • 4 strips bacon cooked, diced

Buttermilk Bleu Cheese Dressing:

  • 1 large egg

  • 3 cloves garlic

  • 1 cup vegetable oil

  • 1/4 cup buttermilk

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 8 ounces blue cheese, coarsely crumbled

  1. In a blender or food processor, combine egg and garlic cloves.

  2. While the machine is still running, slowly add oil in a thin stream.

  3. Turn the machine off and add buttermilk, salt, and peppers. Blend for a few seconds more to combine.

  4. Pour dressing into a bowl and stir in cheese.

  5. To assemble salad, arrange one wedge on a plate. Drizzle with dressing. Sprinkle with halved cherry tomatoes and bacon crumbles.

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