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4th of July party hints 1 and recipe for grilled lime prawns with cilantro

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July 4th is not just a day for food, fun and fireworks. It is the day we get to celebrate the birth of this great nation – July 4, 1776 – so however you plan to celebrate the day, be sure to show your patriotic pride.

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If you are having a party, hopefully you have already invited your guests. If you didn’t include a request for them to bring a beach or lounge chair, shoot them a quick text or Facebook message to ask them to do so. This will ensure you will have enough chairs for everyone.

If you haven’t invited your guests already, why not have a potluck meal? This will allow you to enjoy your own party as much as your guests do. It will also give your guests the chance to showcase their culinary skills, something they may not be able to do too much in today’s fast-paced society.

If your guests ask what types of food to bring, you can suggest they bring appetizers like hot wings, meatballs, chip & dips and fruit salads, all of which are great for all day snacking. If you will be grilling, you can ask for side dishes that will complement the meat you will be grilling.

One recipe you might want to consider is grilled lime prawns with cilantro. It is shared with permission from Becky Reams, a season 3 semi-finalist on Master Chef. You can catch Becky on the upcoming “MasterChef” cruise. You can contact her at - www.beckyreams.com @foodiephotog. You can also get more of her recipes from her book, Becky’s Grilling Recipes.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb large (21-30 size) Shrimp or prawns
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 4-5 limes
  • salt to taste
  • a little oil for the grill
  • 10-12 wooden skewers

Directions:

  1. Heat your grill (or grill pan, if you’re backyard BBQ challenged, like me) over high heat
  2. If the prawns are shell on, remove the shell, but keep the tail intact
  3. Take each skewer and starting at the tail, thread a wooden skewer through the body of the prawn, all the way through. Continue until all prawns are skewered. Set aside
  4. Slice each lime in half, then each half into thirds.
  5. Skewer one lime slice on the end of each prawn skewer, continue with all skewers.
  6. Tear the leaves off the bunch of cilantro (you don’t have to be super precise)
  7. Finely chop the cilantro, and set aside for serving.
  8. Lightly brush all the skewers with oil, and season liberally with kosher salt.
  9. Place each skewer on the grill, and cook each side for 2 minutes.
  10. Remove, and sprinkle with cilantro to serve.
  11. Squeeze the grill lime segments over the prawns and enjoy!

Serve with additional dipping sauce if desired (recipe below)

Optional dipping sauce:

  • juice of 2 limes
  • 1-2 tsp sambal (chili paste)
  • 1 green onion
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • salt to taste
  1. Thinly slice the green onion (white and green parts)
  2. Combine the sliced green onion in a bowl with the juice of the limes, brown sugar and sambal
  3. Stir, and serve alongside the skewers
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