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Chef Sami’s Summer Picnic Recipes

July 1, 2012

In the July “Play with Your Food” column in BRAVA we took a look at the perfect picnic through the eyes of Sami Fgaier, owner of Le Personal Chef. Here are two of Chef Sami’s better recipes for outdoor dining enjoyment.

Kerkennah-style Shrimp, Fig and White Pearl Onion Skewers
(Makes 8 skewers)
½ lb. large shrimp (21/35 count)
8 black figs cut in half
1 bag of white pearl onions (blanched and individually peeled)
2/3 c. olive oil
1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
4 garlic cloves minced
½ Tbsp. coarse sea salt
½ tsp. cracked black pepper
½ smoked Spanish paprika
2 Tbsp. fresh thyme

  1. In a large glass bowl, combine olive oil, garlic, sea salt, cracked black pepper and thyme.  Mix thoroughly
  2. Add shrimp and pearl onions to mix, cover with plastic and refrigerate for 2 hours.
  3. Preheat an outdoor grill for high heat.
  4. Make skewers with shrimp, white pearl onions and fig.  Make sure they are pushed well together so they can hold well on the grill.
  5. Grill 3-4 minutes per side
  6. Drizzle with honey lemon dressing, enjoy!

Honey Lemon Dressing:
1 c. extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp. honey
Juice of 2 lemons
½ tsp. white pepper
½ tsp. fine sea salt

  1. Whisk all ingredients very well until almost creamy in texture

Grilled Summer Salad
3 large tomatoes
1 red onion
2 Anaheim peppers
1 bulb of garlic
½ c. extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. coarse sea salt
Fresh Italian parsley

  1. Grill tomatoes, red onions, peppers and garlic for about 8 minutes on each side. Cooking time might be different for different vegetable.
  2. Remove vegetables from  grill. Put aside in a bowl and cover right away with lid or aluminum foil to retain the heat. Covering the vegetables will also allow the skin to come off easily.
  3. Remove skin from onion, tomato and pepper. Pull out the garlic from the head of garlic. It should come out easy and should be soft like a spread.
  4. Cut all vegetable concassee (rough chop), add olive oil and sea salt.
  5. Put in fridge for about an hour to cool.
  6. Serve on a platter, garnish with sprigs of Italian flat leaf parsley.
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