Do you get irrationally annoyed when people say stuff like, “Hot enough for ya?”
Because I do. Chances are that person is the third to say that phrase to you on any given (hot) day, but they think they’re the first person to ever utter such a hilarious comment. I put this phrase in the same category as “See you next year!” on new year’s eve because I’m always like…really? Or maybe I’m just crabby because of the excessive heat.
To answer the question (?), yes. It’s hot enough for me. It is way, way too damned hot for me. Temperatures should not contain a third digit unless they refer to whether or not meat is cooked through.
We have air, but by the time I get home from work (which includes a 5 block walk in ungodly heat), it kind of sucks to cook over a stove. And most of my weekday cooking is over a stove, because generally things that get cooked in the oven take longer, and I don’t have a lot of time during the week.
So, we’ve been eating our fair amount of salads, from fattoush, to southwestern-y types, to this antipasto.
In high school, I frequented a local pizza chain called Buddy’s, which was pretty great (why don’t more people make square pizzas, by the way? They’re awesome). I liked their pizza but whenever I went for lunch, I pretty much always got an antipasto salad, which came with Buddy bread and it was basically the best lunch ever. It had tomatoes, a ton of cheese, some salami, some ham, and a light vinaigrette.
Now, like everything “ethnic” I make (is this really Italian? I have no clue) I make no claims about authenticity. I know that salads like this can contain everything from pepperoni to artichoke hearts, so really it’s adaptable to whatever you like. I can only tell you that this particular set of ingredients is similar to that which sustained my weekend lunch appetite for roughly 4 years.
1 head of romaine lettuce, chopped (or 1/2 head of iceberg lettuce + 2 hearts of romaine)
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered (or 2 tomatoes, chopped)
3/4 cup diced cucumbers
1/3 lb. genoa salami, thick dice
1/3 lb. ham, thick dice
1/3 lb. mozzarella or provolone brick cheese, diced
1/4 cup olives
1 large banana pepper or 2-3 pepperoncini, sliced
3Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1-2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1/4 tsp. oregano or Tuscan/Italian seasoning
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
5 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Lightly toss together the salad ingredients.
In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, garlic, oregano, and Dijon. Slowly stream in the oil, while continuing to whisk, until it emulsifies and is well-combined. Pour the dressing over the salad, tossing to combine.