Working over a stove on a hot summer day isn’t everybody’s idea of a good time. Fortunately, there are plenty of delicious dishes that require little or no cooking.
Rebecca Gold, chef at the Lotus Leaf cafe, is something of an expert on the subject. While Gold does plenty of cooking at the restaurant, the Lotus Leaf also specializes in salads, smoothies, juices and desserts (many of them vegan) that don’t require heat to make.
For her rubbed kale salad, Gold employs the unusual technique of massaging the dressing into the kale to soften its sometime tough leaves. Maybe you can’t compare apples and oranges, but you’ll see that they combine nicely in Gold’s apples and oranges salad, which Gold said is loosely based on a salad recipe given to her by a friend. Green beans with cilantro is a salad or side dish Gold adapted from epicurious.com. It requires cooking the beans. While Gold boils her beans, another option that won’t heat up your kitchen is to steam them in the microwave. Gold recommends using the small haricot vert variety of green bean if you can find them.
The three-year-old Lotus Leaf, owned by Jacquelyn Keefer, recently expanded and moved to a new location at 251 N. Washington in Old Town.