A refreshing and delicious idea for a picnic
What is it about eating outdoors that is so appealing? Is it simply the fact that we are trapped inside for most of the year and we need to get out come summertime? Maybe the increased amount of oxygen makes the food and wine taste better. Or maybe natural light soothes a primal part of our psyches, making the meal experience that much better. Whatever the reason, I just love eating outdoors, and I’m always on the lookout for new, easy and tasty picnic recipes. Thai-style shrimp and Canadian Cheddar spring rolls are fresh, simple and delicious, especially when paired with crisp, refreshing wines.
The great thing about spring rolls is that they can be made ahead of time and taste great at room temperature. This recipe, however, does involve a bit of cream, so make sure you refrigerate your spring rolls until you head outside. For the wine, I would recommend a dry, crisp Pinot Grigio, such as a Pelee Island, which is made right here in Canada. If you are thirsty for rosé, I would recommend a refreshing and dry Côte de Provence.
Here’s to eating outdoors!
1 lb (450 g) raw shrimp, shelled
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tbsp (15 ml) honey
1 tbsp (15 ml) lime juice
1 tsp (5 ml) grilled sesame seed oil
1 Pinch crushed chilies
¼ cup (60 ml) 15% or 18% thick cream
3 tbsp (45 ml) peanut butter
16 large rice sheets
2 cups (500 ml) vegetables (pepper, carrot, cucumber, etc.) , julienned
2 cups (500 ml) lettuce, shredded
1/3 cup (80 ml) fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped
7 oz (210 g) Canadian Medium Cheddar, cut into sticks
Preheat grill to high heat. On a large square of aluminum foil, place shrimp, garlic, honey, lime juice, oil and crushed chilies. Cover with a second square of aluminum foil and seal tightly.
Cook on grill for 5–7 minutes. Mix cream and peanut butter. Add shrimp and 2–3 tbsp (30–45 ml) of the cooking juice to the peanut butter mixture and let cool. Place rice sheets in warm water to moisten them, about 10–12 seconds.
Transfer onto a clean cloth. Divide the shrimp, vegetables, lettuce, cilantro and Medium Cheddar onto the bottom third of each sheet, leaving 1˝ (2.5 cm) unfilled on each side. To form the rolls, fold both sides of the sheet over the filling, then roll up tightly.
Cheese alternatives: Canadian Swiss cheese, Gouda, Provolone.