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When it comes to food, I like to draw inspirations from my surroundings. I sometimes like to go out to explore, and see what I can find in my own backyard. I think we are pretty lucky living in Australia, one of the most beautiful parts of the world, where fresh local produce is in abundance and right by our doorsteps. So for my next recipe, it is all about using fresh local produce.

I must admit I am a late Chardonnay drinker. When I first tried Chardonnay many years back, the bold, rich, buttery wine that was so smoky from the French oak was just too much for my palate. It took me years to slowly appreciate the complexity of Chardonnay and now I am liking the new rendition which is a little fruitier. I particularly like Jacob’s Creek Classic Chardonnay which I think is a lot more accessible. The Chardonnay is a lighter golden hue instead of the dark amber gold, it has the aroma of fresh melon and peach with subtle toasty oak. It still has that roundness, soft, creamy finish of a Chardonnay but flavour wise, it is lot lighter with fresh stone fruit and subtle oak. It is definitely best served chilled with seafood, chicken or creamy pasta dish. 

When I was developing a recipe to match with this wine, it was a no brainer. I mean, you simply can’t do Australian summer without throwing some prawns on the barbie! 

This is an absolutely favourite dish of mine, prawn and chorizo skewers, the perfect finger food this summer. I had this little delicious morsel at a friend’s BBQ and fell in love with it. It is so simple to prepare and packed a punch in flavours. They are always a popular appetizer at our BBQ parties, as soon as I throw them on the barbie, they will be gone just as quick. 

 You can serve the prawn and chorizo skewers as is, but sometimes I do like to pair them with a refreshing cucumber salad just to cut through the richness. It is nothing fancy, just pickle the cucumber with salt for ten minutes then freshen it up with some mint leaves, or you can add chilli too if you prefer it with a little bit of heat kick. 

Christmas is just around the corner, it is definitely time to throw some prawns on the barbie! 

Prawn and Chorizo skewers with cucumber salad

Prawn and chorizo skewers
500g fresh Tiger prawns, peeled and deveined 
2 chorizo, thickly sliced
2 lemongrass, white parts only, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 red chilli, finely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper

Mint and cucumber salad
2 lebanese cucumbers
a handful of fresh mint leaves
a pinch of salt

1. Soak mini skewers in water for at least 10 minutes before using. Place a piece of chorizo on a chopping board, then wrap a prawn around it. From the tail, pierce a skewer through the prawn and chorizo to secure them together. Repeat with the remaining prawns and chorizo then spread them out on a tray.

2. In a small bowl, add lemongrass, chilli, garlic and olive oil, pinch of salt and pepper, stir and mix well. Drizzle the mixture over the prawn and chorizo skewers evenly, marinate for 20 minutes before grilling.

3. In the mean time, prepare the cucumber salad. Cut cucumber into quarters lengthwise, then thinly sliced diagonally into long strips. Place cucumber in a mixing bowl, add a pinch of salt and mix well, pickle for 10 minutes. Drain any excess water after pickling. Tear mint leaves roughly and add to cucumber, toss together and place salad on serving plate.

4. Heat BBQ on high heat, grill skewers for a minute, turn over and grill for another minute. Remove and place on top of cucumber salad. Drizzle remaining marinate over the skewers and serve it with Jacob’s Creek Classic Chardonnay.