Beat the heat this summer by serving 10 of the best summer ingredients with cooling properties. These fresh vegetables are all at their best during the summer months, so add them to salads and stir-fries for a refreshing feast. Plus, we’ve tapped into the wisdom of Chinese medicine to share proteins, fruits and drinks that are also known for cooling the body.
Crunchy asparagus is ideal in salads and stir-fries. Try using a vegetable peeler to shave it into thin strips, then adding to your favourite salad. Find more of our top asparagus recipes here.
You’ve heard the term ‘cool as a cucumber’, well now you know why! Cucumbers are 96% water, so they hydrate from the inside out. Keep your cool with this soba noodle salad with cucumber, celery and teriyaki chicken.
Celery is another vegetable that has a whopping water content, at 95%. Snack on celery sticks between meals, or toss sliced celery through this Vietnamese rice vermicelli salad.
There’s a reason eggplant is eaten across Asia and the sun-kissed countries of southern Europe – it’s brimming with cooling properties. Serve it simply chargrilled with a drizzle of sesame oil and a sprinkle of spring onions, or try this Japanese recipe for wasabi miso eggplant.
Now’s the time to add leafy Asian greens to everything! Thinly sliced raw bok choy and wombok cabbage add texture to spicy Asian coleslaws and salads, or choose peppery Asian leaves such as mizuna to toss through this teriyaki swordfish salad.
It should come as no surprise that something that grows in water would be utterly refreshing. Seaweed makes our top 10 of cooling ingredients, thanks to its water content and ‘yin’ qualities. To beat the heat, whip up this tofu and wakame udon dish.
Like eggplants, tomatoes are devoured in warm countries across the globe. They’re a no-brainer for summer salads, but for a seriously chilled supper, why not try this tangy cold soba noodle salad?
When it has water in the name, you know you’re onto a winner! We love adding water chestnuts to dumplings, san choy bau and these beef patties with sweet and sour sauce – believe it or not, chilli helps to cool the body too.
Growing in waterways, this peppery cress is packed with good-for-you chlorophyll and hydrating aqua. Add it to this Vietnamese-style stir-fried beef with lemongrass to add pep to your summer salad repertoire.
For more ways to keep your cool this summer, follow these Chinese medicine tips:
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