Howard Stephens, chef at Rosso Trattoria, has a few "cool" recipe ideas to help you be a star at your next summer party and keep your guests cool over the summer. With these recipes, you can't fail.

(Serves 8)

  • 4 cups seeded cubed watermelon (Try to find varieties that will give you different colors & flavors.)
  • 2 teaspoons Aleppo pepper. (You can substitute your favorite dry chili powder or fresh chilies, sliced thin)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil chiffonade
  • 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 tablespoons golden balsamic vinegar
  • Maldon salt

Place watermelon in a bowl. Add Aleppo, basil, olive oil, golden balsamic vinegar. Toss very gently to combine. Arrange watermelon on a chilled plate and finish with maldon salt to taste.

(Serves 6- 8)

  • 1 pound day-old focaccia, or ciabatta with crust, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 6 cups)
  • 2 overripe large heirloom tomatoes chopped or equivalent cherry tomatoes sliced in half
  • 2 zucchini slice into thin half moons
  • 1 cup grilled corn
  • 1 medium red onion, sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • Maldon salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 10 fresh basil leaves, torn