Cold Comfort : Recipes for dishes you don't normally eat cold. A salad that's a soup. Beans for dessert. And more.

It's 112 degrees outside. You're hot--but you're hungry. What do you eat?

On the hottest day in L.A. history, The Times' Kathie Jenkins asked some of the city's favorite chefs just that. "Cold food," they replied, one and all.

Ken Frank, La Toque: "Fresh peach ice cream. I got peaches at Farmers' Market and my mom wanted some ice cream so I made it. I've eaten three scoops already today. But the best thing on a hot day is lemonade; our staff drank four gallons during the lunch hour."

Silvio de Mori, Tuttobene: "I love risotto salad. I make it with tuna, olive oil, fresh tomato, onions, olives and sometimes I add some calamari , celery, fresh basil, garlic. I also love an espresso on the rocks with Sweet & Low. You can even add a spoon of ice cream."

Mark Carter, Duplex: "A beer, probably . . . one of mine, of course. Or cold split pea soup with mint and a bitter green salad."

Katsu, Katsu: "I like to eat cold buckwheat noodles on crushed ice. It's the perfect thing for a hot day."

Piero Selvaggio, Valentino: "Simple, fresh and juicy, enticing flavors: A chopped tomato salad with basil and some incredible olive oil--I scoop it up with some wonderful bread. After that a beautiful fresh orange, sliced, and some shavings of good Parmesan on the side."

Evan Kleiman, Angeli: "I just made a cold minestrone with all-green veggies--peas, Swiss chard . . . I serve it with a spoonful of pesto, cold."

Art, Art's Deli: "A good bowl of beef borscht with sour cream, maybe with a boiled potato in it, or sometimes I put fresh cucumbers in."

Michael Roberts, Trumps: "It's embarrassing. I made barbecued ribs, hot dogs and potato salad last night. But mango and bananas are my favorite day-time food . . . How do I fix it? I just stand at the sink and eat a mango and a banana."

Wolfgang Puck, Spago: "I make a wonderful tray of salads and have it with bread, fresh fruit and an espresso granita . . . mmmmm , it's really good."

Susan Feniger, City: "Chia limeade. It's made with chia seeds from Mexico, fresh lime juice and sugar. You know, I can't imagine eating much on a hot day."

Masayuki Ishikawa, Sawtelle Kitchen: "I like to keep it simple. A cold salad or a cold soup or maybe a cold pasta with prosciutto and some mayonnaise."

Mario Tamayo, Atlas Bar and Grill: "Let's see . . . a fresh fruit shake with papaya and mango."

Toribio Prado, Cha Cha Cha: "Since I'm a vegetarian I would have gazpacho for an appetizer and then I would have our Chino Latino salad. For dessert maybe some fresh berries."

Patrick Terrail, Ma Maison Sofitel: "I think cabbage salad is wonderful. I put in lemon, olive oil, capers, a little salt, dice in a few apples . . . perfect."

Patrick Healy, Champagne: " Salade nicoise with a nice bottle of chilled rose, and then fresh fruit salad for dessert. That's what I had for lunch today."

Bruce Marder, West Beach/Broadway Deli: "Cold food . . . a turkey sandwich with Manchego cheese, arugula, tomato and mayonnaise on the Broadway Deli country bread. To drink, a Eureka beer."

Hans Rockenwagner, Rockenwagner and Fama: "My three favorite things on hot days are fruit salad, potato salad and grilled sausages, but not in that order."

Andre Patout, Patout's: "Cold pasta salad made with olive oil, garlic and fresh vegetables. That's what I just ate."

Maurice Peguet, Tulipe: "Some kind of nice shellfish salad with a light vinaigrette. For dessert a couple of fresh apricots and a glass of water. (Partner and co-chef) Roland (Gibert) would have the same thing as me because we eat lunch together and one of us prepares it."

We have our own ideas about cold food. Inside you'll find recipes for cold soups, cold salads and cold desserts. Because now that we're in the middle of summer, cold is very hot.

Food styling by Donna Deane

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