This summer has been muggy, sticky and…well, hot. When it’s unpleasantly warm outside, you just want to cool off inside. Satisfy that desire with one of these dishes, just about guaranteed to help you beat the heat. By Jessica Allen.
A spacious izakaya, EN Japanese Brasserie showcases carefully prepared Japanese standards centered around a small-plates kaiseki menu. In addition to the appeal of an extensive sake menu and good cocktails, they make fresh tofu hourly during dinner service. Silky and smooth, this quivering mass comes in a wooden box, along with garlicky wari joyu (a nice blend of soy sauce and fish broth.)
Available at brunch, the crepinette at Foragers Table includes a relish made from sweet and sour apples and an egg served sunnyside up on a pork crepinette (similar to a sausage, but wrapped in caul fat and gently sauteed). The dish mixes flavors and textures, moving from crunchy to crispy to goopy to chewy. The concrete-chic space’s big picture windows guarantee you won’t feel as if you’re missing out on sunshine while cooling off.
In southern India, people eat dosas (stuffed, fried crepes) and uttapams (vegetable pancakes, pictured) for breakfast, and the dishes definitely sooth, warming the belly without exciting it, letting your body wake up without jolting it into action. They’re perfect for midday or evening as well, even in the summer, dunked into sambar (a fiery soup) or coconut chutney, since very flavorful food tempers overheated souls, as any resident of South Asia will tell you.
At Lunchbox Brooklyn, a little bodega and to-go counter in Greenpoint, you can get smoothies, soups, and juices — all terribly refreshing. We like the sandwiches, though, especially the Jones, which blends beets, green apples, goat cheese, walnuts, sea salt, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar on a baguette. Just thinking about it lowers our heart rates, sending calming waves from brain to toes.
OK, so this one’s kind of a DIY-er. Peaches start coming into season around New York in mid-summer, so grab a few from the Union Square Greenmarket. Then make your way north a few blocks to Mario Batali and company’s bastion of all things Italian, Eataly. Order one of the many types of prosciutto from the Salumi Department, cut whisper thin. Take your goodies across the street to Madison Square Park, find a shady spot, and mow down.