a Summer Grilling Feast to Beat the Heat

I love to cook, but I really, really, really love to cook with friends. There’s something beautiful about everyone pitching in together, sharing their techniques and their mother’s secrets. I got together with Michelle from Honest and Truly, Hyacynth from Undercover Mother at Melissa‘s house to grill up a Mediterranean summer feast. The heat index hovered above 105, definitely more Chicagoan than Mediterranean, but our menu was cool and refreshing.

Michelle from Honest and Truly at Summer Grilling Feast
Michelle from Honest and Truly waiting for the feast to begin.

The gathering was organized by the Motherhood and sponsored by Lawry’s Seasoned Salt and Marinades. We received a stipend to purchase our groceries and were challenged to use the Lawry’s salt or marinades that we received in each of our recipes. We each received a package containing a large container of Lawry’s Seasoned Salt, a bottle of Lawry’s Balsamic Herb Marinade, and another bottle of Lawry’s Original Seasoned Salt Marinade. After much mouth-watering email exchange, here is the menu we agreed on:

  • Watermelon Gazpacho Topped with Avocado and Sweet Jumbo Shrimp Seasoned with Lawry’s seasoned salt
  • Balsamic Marinated Chicken Kebabs with Peach Chutney and Grilled Pineapple
  • Tomato and Mozzarella Salad with Dressing Flavored with Lawry’s Original Marinade (to be prepared by two other members of our team separately)

The dishes were the perfect combination of sweet and savory to beat the heat. Even the chicken kebabs would be equally good cold. So if the heat wave is killing you, take a look at these flavorful, easy to do ahead dishes for dinner one of these nights!

Watermelon GazpachoRecipe: Watermelon Gazpacho with Grilled Shrimp

Summary: This delicious summer soup was adapted from an Watermelon Gazpacho with Grilled Shrimp”>Eating Well Recipe.

Preparation time: 20 minute(s)

Cooking time: 10 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 8


  • 1 Medium Seedless or Seeded Watermelon, Finely Diced
  • 1 medium cucumber, peeled, seeded and finely diced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, finely diced
  • 2 avocados, coarsely chopped
  • 3/4 pound of large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 TBSPS of Lawry’s Seasoned Salt
  • Salt and Pepper to your Taste


  1. Mix watermelon, cucumber, bell pepper, white wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, and olive oil in a large bowl.
  2. Measure 3 cups of the mixture into a blender or food processor and puree. Transfer to another large bowl. Puree another 3 cups and add to the bowl.
  3. Taste the soup and salt as desired.
  4. Top with the remaining diced mixture and the avocado.
  5. Season the shrimp with Lawry’s Seasoned Salt.
  6. Thread onto skewers. Cook on direct heat for 3-4 minutes on each side.
  7. Remove the shrimp from the skewers and arrange them prettily around the soup.
  8. Serve chilled.

My rating 5 stars:  ????? 1 review(s)

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Grilled Pineapple and Chicken Kebabs with Peach ChutneyRecipe: Peach Chutney

Summary: This peach chutney was a breeze to whip up and absolutely delicious with both chicken kebabs and pan fried pork chops.

Preparation time: 5 minute(s)

Cooking time: 15 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 4


  • 2 fresh Peaches, peeled and diced
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 lemon, juiced and zested
  • 1 TBSP of white wine vinegar
  • 2 TBSPs of brown sugar
  • 1 TBSP of balsamic
  • 1 TSP of olive oil


  1. Chop the peaches, shallots, and onion.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a small saucepan. Add the shallots and onion and saute until soft, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the peaches, lemon juice and zest, sugar, and vinegars. Stir well. Lower heat to medium low and let simmer, stirring occasionally, for 15 to 20 minutes, until the chutney has come together and is a little brown.
  4. Will keep in the fridge for 2-3 days after preparation.

My rating 5 stars:  ????? 1 review(s)

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Recipe: Lawry’s Balsamic Marinated Chicken Kebabs with Grilled Pineapple

Summary: Grilled chicken kebabs can be quite dry but marinating them in the Lawry’s Balsamic Marinade kept the meat tender and delicious.


  • 3 Chicken Breasts, Cut into 2 inch cubes
  • 1 cup of Lawry’s Balsamic Marinade
  • 1 Pineapple, peeled and cored, and cut into 2 inch cubes

Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Cooking time: 20 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 6


  1. Wash and cut the chicken into 2 inch cubes, removing most fast and the tenderloins.
  2. Place chicken in a bowl and cover with the marinade overnight.
  3. Preheat your grill with one direct heat zone and one cooler indirect heat zone.
  4. Soak bamboo skewers in water for an hour.
  5. Peel, core, and cut the pineapple into 2 inch cubes.
  6. Thread the chicken onto skewers.
  7. On separate skewers, to maintain even cooking, thread the pineapple. Mixed fruit and meat skewers may look prettier but they don’t cook as evenly or safely.
  8. Cook the chicken first on indirect heat, 5-6 minutes on each side.
  9. Cook the pineapple second, also on indirect heat, 2 minutes max on each side to have it caramelize but not burn.
  10. Serve immediately, or place in the fridge to serve cold. The peach chutney makes a delicious dipping sauce.

My rating 5 stars:  ????? 1 review(s)

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8 Responses to a Summer Grilling Feast to Beat the Heat

  1. I agree. I love solo cooking but there is something fun about having a partner in the kitchen whether it’s a girlfriend, potential love interest, etc. The teamwork and conversation just makes things even more fun.

  2. Great website…

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