Picnic Month eats: Pickled shrimp, kale salad and more

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Pickled Shrimp

Serves four


1 pound peeled/de-veined medium shrimp

Pinch of kosher salt

½ medium, shaved fennel

½ medium red onion

2 garlic cloves thinly sliced

Pinch of crushed red pepper 

¼ cup of vinegar 

½ cup fresh lemon juice 

¼ cup grape seed oil 

Pinch Old Bay seasoning

Fresh black pepper

Fresh thyme sprig


Cook shrimp in a log pot of boiling salted water. Drain shock in an ice bath. Set aside.

Combine shrimp, fennel bulb, onion, garlic, crush pepper, lemon juice, vinegar , oil, seasoning old bay, black pepper and thyme. Marinate overnight.

Serve with toast points

Baby Kale Salad

Serves four


1 ½ Tablespoons apple cider vinegar

2 tablespoons grape seed oil

1 tablespoon honey

½ teaspoon kosher salt

5 oz baby kale

¼ cup golden raisins

3 tablespoons toasted pecans

Salt and fresh-ground black pepper


Combine the vinegar, oil, honey, salt in a small mason jar. Seal tightly and shake to combine. Place the kale in a large salad bowl. Just before serving, add the dressing, tossing to coat kale.

Add golden raisins and pecans and toss again.

Season to taste with salt and pepper, serve quickly

Herb Oil Potato Salad

Serves four


1 ½ pound red potatoes (about 15 diced medium)

½ cup minced fresh herbs (parsley, tarragon, chives)

2 scallion, sliced thin

2 tablespoons grape seed oil 

1 tablespoon of whole grain mustard

1 tablespoon apple-cider vinegar

½ cup diced gherkin pickles minced fine

½ cup pimentos diced fine 

Kosher salt and black pepper to taste


Fill a large pot of water and place potatoes in pot, cook for 12-14 minutes, drain - air cool.

In a medium bowl, mix together the herbs, scallions, oil, mustard, vinegar, pickles, pepper, salt, pepper add to potatoes, mix well, adjust seasoning.

Southern Fried Chicken

Serves four


1 three-pound chicken, cut into 8 pieces, brine over night for 8-12 hours

(How to Brine) 1 Quart semi-cold water, add ¼ cup of Kosher salt

1 Quart Buttermilk

Chef Jesse's spice blend 1 ½ cups

(To make blend) 1 tsp Paprika, 1 tsp granulated garlic, 1 tsp granulated onion, ½ tsp cayenne, ½ tsp black pepper, ½ cup white pepper, ½ tsp fresh thyme

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 tbsp cornstarch


Prepare the dredge by blending together the flour, cornstarch, Chef Jesse's blend in a shallow bowl.

Place chicken pieces in the dredge making sure drain well. Coat, shake off excess flour.

Fry for 15 minutes, drain on paper towel or wire rack.

Canola oil for frying 

Drain brined chicken and rinse well. In a bowl, add buttermilk and Chef Jesse's Blend, place chicken and marinate in refrigerator for 8-12 hours more. 

Heat cooking oil to 365 degrees, allow chicken to rest a few minutes after refrigeration because really cold chicken will reduce the heat.

Fry chicken for 25 minutes, chicken will start to float, look for golden brown and crispy. 

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