Binkies and BBQ!

Hi Foodies! Long time, no blog! It has been a very exciting time in our household as our newest chef has joined the kitchen! 6 weeks early, our son Luca decided it was time to make his bustling debut. Our little guy was in the NICU for almost three weeks so needless to say, I haven’t been frequenting the stove or grill or the grocery store often, if at all, the past month. Although we were blessed with the generosity of family coming by with “meals on wheels,” tonight I’m back to the counters and it feels great 🙂 With my newly hired sous-chef by my side, we combined our Binkies and BBQ for simple Grilled Shrimp Skewers and Caprese Salad. Two utterly classic and light summer dishes. Here’s what we did.

Binkies and BBQ :)

Binkies and BBQ 🙂

Shrimp Skewers

Simple Shrimp on the BBQ (notice one of my favorite kitchen gadgets?)

Simple Shrimp on the BBQ (notice one of my favorite kitchen gadgets?)

Ingredients:

1 lb Jumbo Unpeeled Raw Shrimp

1 clove chopped garlic

Juice of 1 lemon

1 tsp dried oregano

Dash crushed red pepper flakes

Sea Salt and Pepper

1/4 cup EVOO

4 BBQ skewers

Directions:

Peel and clean your shrimp. I prefer to leave the tails on because I think it looks pretty but strip them completely if it’s easier for you! I also like to wear disposable gloves, a tip I stole from my Grandmother, to avoid that seemingly permanent fishy smell on my hands. I’d rather save for the smell of garlic 😉 Toss the shrimp into a large ziplock bag (one of my favorite marinating tools! Easy and garbage friendly!) along with the other ingredients. Marinate in the fridge for about 20 minutes. Be careful not to leave them too long otherwise they will begin to cook in the acidity of the lemon juice and you’ll end up with ceviche instead!

Thread the shrimp onto the skewers (if they are wooden be sure to soak them in water first), about 5 per skewer. Grill over medium heat about 3-4 minutes on each side. Serve with lemon wedges and a sprinkle of parsley to garnish with something fresh.

Caprese Salad

Traditional Italian Caprese salad

Traditional Italian Caprese salad

Ingredients:

1 large tomato or 3 roma or whichever kind you have on the counter (reminder: no refrigerating your tomatoes!)

Handful of basil leaves

A few slices of good mozzarella (tonight I used the marinated kind and it was delicious! It added an extra layer of herbed flavor)

1 clove chopped garlic

A drizzle of good EVOO and balsamic (courtesy of my mom’s recent trip to Italy!)

Sprinkle of salt (the best spice to pair with fresh, raw tomatoes)

Directions:

Layer tomato, mozzarella, and basil leaves on a plate. Sprinkle with garlic and remaining ingredients.  Yes, it’s important to use good ingredients in this recipe as it’s all uncooked. That’s it! So super easy and one of my faaaaavorite summer dishes. For a fun party version use grape tomatoes and small mozzarella balls and alternate them on skewers. Sprinkle with chiffonade basil leaves and top with EVOO, balsamic, and salt.

Getting back into the kitchen may be dreaded by some new moms, but it’s where I spent a good bit of my pregnancy and where I plan to spend quite of bit of time with my son. Pandora playing on the IPad and the smells of summer cooking in the air, I welcomed my new chef into my kitchen! I hope he will share my love of cooking and my love of great food but if not, at least he’ll be eating well 😉

The new chef has arrived!

The new chef has arrived!

Until next time…

Eat Well,

Stephanie a.k.a. The Foodetarian

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