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Summer is upon us and that means one thing: barbecues.
A BBQ where everybody chips in with the food is a long-standing Aussie tradition, and as the days get longer, so grows the list of invitations. But what to bring that doesn’t involve hours standing over a hot stove or oven?
For the next time you’re asked to bring a plate, here are five ideas that don’t require any cooking and need only minimal use of appliances. They’re perfect for keeping the heat in your kitchen down, as well as helping reduce your household energy usage.
Whether you like your Anzac bickies chewy or crunchy, there’s no mistaking these treats are an Aussie fave. These delectable little balls capture the true flavour of Anzac biscuits without cranking up the oven.
Whizz all the ingredients up in a food processor, then roll into bite-sized balls before popping them in the fridge for at least an hour to firm up. If you find they’re not forming into balls, just add a bit of water to bring the mixture together.
Elevate the quintessential summer watermelon by combining it with savoury ingredients and some fresh herbs to create a refreshing, colourful plate.
Gently mix the watermelon cubes, feta and mint leaves in a large bowl. Drizzle with the olive oil and season to taste.
You can never go wrong with chips and dip, but don’t be limited by what’s on sale in your local supermarket. Pair some crackers and bread with one (or all!) of these dips for your next backyard party.
Mix the flesh of three ripe avocados and a handful of diced cherry tomatoes with a good lug of extra virgin olive oil, the juice of a lemon and salt and pepper to taste.
Use a blender or food processor to blitz two 400g tins of cooked, rinsed chickpeas; 2 tablespoons of tahini; and 2 garlic cloves. Squeeze in the juice of a lemon and stir in extra virgin olive oil till the mixture reaches the desired consistency. Season to taste.
Whizz up 425-450g tinned beetroot with half a cup of sour cream or Greek yoghurt in a blender or food processor. Finish it off with a squeeze of lemon juice.
Combine some easy homemade pesto with a humble rotisserie chicken to create a delicious summer salad. No one will know you didn’t cook the chicken yourself!
Pulse the basil, pine nuts, parmesan and garlic in a blender or food processor. Be careful not to overwork or puree the mixture. Fold in the parmesan, then stir through the olive oil till the desired consistency is reached. Season to taste.
Shred a rotisserie chicken and toss it with the pesto and some fresh greens like baby spinach, roquette and pea shoots. And a shaving of parmesan before serving.
If you’re hosting, desserts that can be made in advance and kept in the freezer hit the sweet spot.
A refreshing snack or delectable dessert, this is the work of mere moments.
Slice and freeze a selection of fruit. Once they’re solid, melt dark chocolate in the microwave – start on medium heat for one minute, stir and then return the chocolate to the microwave for 20 second bursts, stirring between.
Once the chocolate’s melted dip in each piece of fruit. Eat immediately or refreeze until you’re ready to serve.