No-Cook Recipes

There are a lot of no-cook recipes in existence, many of which are dessert recipes and, of course, the ever-popular sushi. However, I was able to find some that go outside the dessert and sushi “box”, and I was also able to find some very tasty-looking ones for those of us who must satisfy the multiple sweet teeth in our mouths. I’ve provided some links to my sources, such as Food Network, where you can perform a search of the site using “no-cook” or “no cook”.

First, let’s address sushi. I bought a small recipe book from my local book store that contained nothing but sushi recipes. Some are very simple, and some are a little more involved. My husband and I got some pointers from the book, then went to our local farmer’s /specialty market and bought the ingredients for simple sushi for two:

Sushi rice (this will require steaming or boiling – use sushi rice as it contains more starch and will cook to the sticky consistency that is needed)
Sushi Nori (sheets of toasted seaweed)
Ã?½ lb. sushi-grade salmon, sliced thinly (you can use any variety of sushi-grade fish you like, but it’s IMPORTANT that it be labeled as sushi-grade)
Wasabi powder
Japanese mayonnaise
Sushi kit (contains a bamboo mat for rolling and, in the one we bought, 2 sets of chopsticks)
Fresh ginger root
Soy sauce

Steam or boil the rice according to the package directions. Mix 1 tsp. of Wasabi powder with water until it is the consistency of paste. Lay one sheet of nori on the bamboo mat and top with enough rice to cover with a thin layer to within �¼ inch of the edge, pressing down the rice to be sure it sticks to the nori. Turn the nori over, rice side down on the mat, and spread a very, very thin line of Wasabi down the length of one edge of the nori. Place 1-2 slices of salmon over the Wasabi and spread a thin layer of the mayonnaise over the salmon. Using the mat as a guide and starting at the end with the ingredients, roll the nori, stopping to squeeze the roll tight along the way. Continue this process until the roll is completed. Slice the roll and serve with soy sauce and thinly sliced ginger.

This no-cook barbecue sauce recipe comes from George Stella, who was a professional chef and, as a result, cooked the same rich recipes at home for his family. As a result, the whole family gained weight and realized how unhealthy it was. George created low calorie, low fat, low sugar recipes based on the very rich ones he used to cook in restaurants, and Food Network carries his show called Low Carb and Lovin’ It. The entire family began eating these new recipes and all have lost quite a bit of weight. If you get a chance to watch his show, do so. He’s a great chef and very entertaining.

29 ounces no-sugar-added tomato sauce
6 ounces no-sugar-added tomato paste
2 ounces bourbon
2 tablespoons white vinegar
2 tablespoons liquid smoke
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tablespoon hot sauce
3/4 cup sugar substitute (recommended: Splenda)
1/4 cup brown sugar substitute, optional (recommended: Sugar Twin brand)
2 tablespoons red onion, finely chopped
1 small clove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon onion powder

Combine sauce ingredients in a bowl and whisk well to combine. Reserve, refrigerated.

The following no-cook pasta sauce recipe also came from the Food Network site. The only thing you would have to cook is the pasta.

12 ounces penne
1/4 cup virgin olive oil
6 tomatoes, diced
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
3 cloves garlic, minced
Fresh basil, chopped
Grated Parmesan cheese

In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook penne according to package directions. In a large bowl, combine tomatoes, garlic, olive oil and vinegar. Toss together with basil. When tender, drain penne, add to bowl and toss to coat. Serve with fresh Parmesan cheese

The following no-cook recipes come from the Food Network site on Emeril Lagasse’s “Emeril Live” page. The coulis can be used with chocolate desserts, cheesecake, pastries, ice creamâÂ?¦anywhere you want to add a little fruity sauce to a dessert. Seviche is a form of “cooking” where the acid from lime juice or vinegar will cook the fish while marinating.

1 pint strawberries, hulled
1 lemon, juiced
2 tablespoons grand marnier
2 tablespoons sugar, or more, to taste
Water, to thin

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Add a little water, if necessary, to thin. Strain into a clean bowl.

1 pound assorted raw seafood, such as bay scallops, rock shrimp, diced lobster meat, firm fish fillets, etc.
1/4 cup chopped red bell peppers
1/4 cup chopped yellow bell peppers
1 small fresh jalapeno, seeded and chopped (about 1 tablespoon)
1/2 cup chopped red onion
6 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
Freshly ground black pepper
12 fresh flour tortillas

Combine the first 9 ingredients in a mixing bowl. Mix well. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Serve the Seviche with the tortillas. Garnish with parsley.

The following recipes can be found at Epicurious, which contains thousands upon thousands of recipes. Every recipe I have tried from this site has been wonderful.

One of the truly classic no-cook soups is Gazpacho. This one turns up the volume a little by adding some chiles.

4 cups tomato juice
1 red onion, finely chopped (about 2 cups)
1 cucumber, halved, peeled, seeded, finely chopped (about 1 1/2 cups)
1 red bell pepper, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
1 yellow bell pepper, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
2 tomatoes, seeded, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
1/4 cup Champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped seeded jalape�±o chile
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 garlic clove, minced
3/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Mix all ingredients in large bowl. Cover and chill until cold, at least 2 hours. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep refrigerated.)

1/3 cup chilled heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon vanilla
5 chocolate wafers such as Nabisco Famous
1/3 cup fresh raspberries
Garnish: grated bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened)

Beat cream with sugar and vanilla in a small deep bowl with an electric mixer until it just holds stiff peaks.
Spread 1 heaping teaspoon cream onto each of 4 wafers. Arrange enough raspberries side by side (as close together as possible) on 1 cream-topped wafer to form an even layer. Stack 2 cream-topped wafers on a plate (cream sides up) and top with berry wafer, then carefully spread another teaspoon cream over berries. Top with last cream wafer and cover cream with remaining plain wafer. Frost top and sides of cake with remaining cream. Cover with an inverted bowl and chill at least 4 hours.

Serve cake with remaining berries.

Cooks’ note:
� Cake can chill up to 1 day.

2 English hothouse cucumbers (1 1/2 pounds total), unpeeled, very thinly sliced
1 tablespoon coarse kosher salt
1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh dill
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Place cucumber slices in colander. Sprinkle with salt; toss to coat. Let stand 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile, for dressing, stir vinegar, dill, sugar, and pepper in large bowl until sugar is dissolved.

Drain cucumbers well; pat dry. Add cucumbers to dressing and stir to blend. Refrigerate at least 15 minutes and up to 2 hours; serve cold.

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

1/4 cup packed fresh basil leaves
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan (1 ounce)
1 tablespoon pine nuts
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound zucchini (about 2 large)
1/2 pound yellow squash (about 1 large)

In a food processor pur�©e together basil, Parmesan, pine nuts, salt, lemon juice, and oil until smooth and season with pepper.

With a mandoline or other manual slicer, cut zucchini and yellow squash lengthwise into very thin slices. Arrange slices in one layer, overlapping them slightly, on 2 large platters and drizzle pesto over slices. Chill zucchini and yellow squash, covered, at least 1 hour, to allow dressing to be absorbed, and up to 1 day.
Serves 6 as a side dish.

When you are looking for no-cook recipes, remember there are more than just the no-bake cookies out there. There are many no-cook recipes containing vegetable dishes, sauces, desserts, and fish. Search Google for recipe sites that provide recipes that have been prepared in test kitchens before being published. A few links to my favorites are provided.

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