What food is enjoyable when the mercury's rising? And what's the worst thing you can eat?
When it's hot outside, we want something a bit more chilled and refreshing on our plates. Check out our best and worst hot weather foods, then have your say on what you like to eat in the comments box below.
The five BEST hot weather foods
We're not sure we even have to mention this, but ice cream is a must in hot weather. A perfect balance of sweetness and creaminess, ice cream is perfect. Sorbet gets an honourable mention too. We think lemon sorbet is even better than ice cream when it's really hot.
Watermelon is the juiciest of fruits, and one of the most colourful. We think sucking on a wedge of watermelon is even more refreshing than a cold can of fizz, and with a 92% water content it’s a tasty way to rehydrate, too. Cut it up and serve it with feta cubes for a simple salad.
The queue for the salad stall at our local food market has never been longer. We want light, healthy, colourful food when it’s hot, and the more foliage, the better! Make your own hearty salad for dinner from our top 10 salad recipes.
To let summer go without at least one barbecue every weekend is criminal. There’s room for hot dogs, potato salad, and vegetable skewers too, but nothing is so essential to a BBQ than fat, juicy burgers. Impress barbie guests with your own spiced pork burgers next time.
Spicy food makes you sweat and helps you to cool down. It's also fantastically delicious, and best served in summer with a cold glass of beer or mango juice. Some people disagree and say it warms you up, but we don't think so. Though your mouth and face may feel hot, it will cool you down in the long run.
The five WORST hot weather foods
Warm chocolate, which melts on fingertips and sticks to the wrapping… no, no, no! It’s a surefire way to headache city, and we all know that chocolate is best enjoyed chilled, when you get that lovely ‘snap’ sound with every bite.
Cold new potato salad, yes; hot jacket potatoes, no. Because potatoes have such a high water content, they’re scalding hot when they come out of the oven; not what you want when you’re desperately trying to cool down. Plus they’re far too filling for frolicking around in the garden.
Whacking great big pies are too hot, filling and stodgy for summer. Though we would be all over a chicken and leek pie in a few months' time, when it's hot we can't even think about them. But then again, a wee pork pie (served cold, of course) in your picnic hamper is just the ticket.
Bit of a controversial one, this. Some say tea with one sugar is the most rehydrating drink you can have… but is iced tea better in the summer? Coffee is also not a great choice as caffeine is a diuretic, so may contribute to speedy dehydration.
Soup actually fits into both categories. Hot chicken noodle or mushroom soup is a no-go in the summer months, but iced soups like gazpacho are excellent. You can make a sweet berry version of this soup for dessert, which is excellent after a barbecue.
This is a classic loveFOOD article that has been updated
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