Friday, July 5, 2013

"Mozzarella, Prosciutto, and Tomato Skewers" For A Romantic Picnic

I hope that everyone enjoyed their Fourth of July with family, friends, fireworks, and lots of good tasty food. Did you know that July is also known as National Picnic Month? It makes perfect sense to continue your holiday weekend. So, go to the attic and find your picnic basket, a blanket, and pack some food. Are you ready for your picnic now? Wait, you can’t go anywhere yet, you need to plan this a little more. First you need to decide what type of picnic this is, do you want to go to the park, the beach, or go on a hike? My idea would be a Romantic Picnic without the children. You like many American’s spent July 4th with your family, watching the fireworks displays and enjoying spending the day with them. Picnics are extremely popular with couples in love. There is nothing like a soft blanket for two laid out in a nice shady park, for some quality time to spend with your special person. Now, this is your turn to treasure a relaxing and enjoyable day with your spouse or partner. Before you leave, here are some recommendations for supplies for your romantic picnic to be perfect.

Let’s put together a checklist of what you really need for your special romantic picnic with your loved one. To plan a romantic picnic, keep in mind these ideas; remember this is still a picnic not a formal meal, so go with the flow. The surprise factor can be enchanting. Pack some flowers, candles, or some special music to share. A big part of romance is location. Choose a spot that is special to you like a park, the beach, near a lake or in a wooded area, or maybe something different is your special place to go, on a boat, rooftop, or lastly a vineyard. Then there is the decision for a day or evening picnic. Sometimes an evening picnic is wonderful, so you can see the stars in the sky. Whatever your personality is as a couple is where you should feel comfortable.

Sometimes talking together is very important, but other times you may want to try flying a kite, playing games such as cards, backgammon, Frisbee, swimming, hiking, crossword puzzles, and also reading a book or poetry to each other. You picked a spot, found some things to do on your picnic and now we have to remember to pack some important items for an unforgettable date. Besides your blanket, you may want a pillow, a folding chair, an umbrella (for heat as well as for rain), sunscreen, hats with brims, water bottle, bug spray, napkins, disposable plates, cups, and utensils, plus a plastic bag for trash. The most essential item of your picnic is the basket you carry your food in for a memorable culinary experience.

Food is one of the most sensual pleasures people can share. Because it is a picnic you want to eat something that is easy, not that messy, and of course romantic as well as delicious. Some types of foods would include bite sized items, small items on skewers, wraps, sandwiches, cheeses, fruits, chocolates (if it is not too hot out) and you must have a bottle of wine or lemonade. Strawberries, grapes, cherries, peaches, melon cut in small pieces are delectable examples of bite sized fruit. Soft and hard cheeses with crisp crackers, a crunchy loaf of Italian bread, hard Salami, Pepperoni, Prosciutto in slices, wraps made with salads, and some tasty foods for skewers, like cherry tomatoes, mozzarella, ham, artichokes, and olives. Then we have decadent desserts like cookies, biscotti, Italian pastry, cupcakes, and bread cakes that are not gooey. One of the last items I would remember to take on this fabulous picnic is the wine of your choice. I would choose a white/rosé or a very light red. I think a Sauvignon Blanc and crisp wines like it are a good choice. Chenin Blanc, Pinot Gris, and Pinot Blanc are among the favorite picnic wines for summertime.

Perfect! I think we have it right now, and I am on my way to my favorite picnic spot to meet my romantic person. So what makes your picnic perfect?  Is it the right food, location, good weather, things to do, privacy, peace, quiet, and your special person? I think it's probably a combination of everything! My recipe this week is a suggestion I received from Mary Ann of Ciao Italia. It is colorful, flavorful, and made on skewers, so it is easy to include in your romantic picnic basket. Enjoy! Abbondanza!!!  

Mozzarella, Prosciutto, and Tomato Skewers

16 fresh baby mozzarella balls (bocconcini)
8 thin slices of prosciutto di Parma, cut in half width-wise
16 grape or cherry tomatoes
1 loaf of crisp Italian bread
6 basil leaves or sage cut into thin strips
16 wooden skewers
Extra Virgin olive oil

Wrap individual mozzarella balls with a half slice of prosciutto and basil or sage leaves. Assemble by placing a piece of wrapped mozzarella, a tomato and repeat the order. Plate skewers on a plate or platter. Drizzle with Extra Virgin Olive oil. Serve with Italian bread.

Till Next Time……………………………….....

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