Festive Shrimp Salad Recipe

Festive Shrimp Salad Recipe Recipe

Our lovely neighbor Tom is so sweet; he always brings us lemons from his brother's garden. I've made countless lemon desserts with them in the past, so this time I thought I could use them in a savory dish. 

I prepared a lemon dressing that I used both as marinade for jumbo shrimp and as vinaigrette for celery, spinach, cucumber, carrot and French green bean salad

If you want to turn a plain Jane seafood salad into a gorgeous salad course, I recommend using a mini dessert bowl and "hanging" the shrimp off the rim of the glass and placing the salad at the bottom of each bowl.

Ingredients

Yields: 8 servings

2 cups baby spinach leaves
1½ cups green beans, cut into 1½" pieces
2 cups Romaine hearts, shredded
2 celery stalks, peeled and diced
1 carrot
1 cucumber
16 jumbo shrimp, thawed (if frozen)
1 clove garlic, finely minced
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
juice of 1 lemon
1 cup lemon vinaigrette (recipe follows), or your favorite salad dressing
1½ teaspoons black pepper, freshly cracked


Directions

Prepping the cucumber: Cut the cucumber in half lengthwise and use a spoon to remove the seeds. Layer a cooling rack on top of a cookie sheet and place the cucumber on top. Sprinkle with salt on both sides and let sit for 1 hour. Pat dry with a kitchen towel. Cut the cucumber into ¼ to ½-inch thick slices. Set aside.

Prepping the shrimp: Carefully shell and de-vein (remove the black part) of the shrimp using a sharp hook-like paring knife, all the way from the head to the tail so when it's cooked, the shrimp will open up like a butterfly. Make sure to remove the tip of the tail (the shell that covers the tail) as well; this part is very delicate. Rinse the shrimp under cold running water and pat dry using a paper towel. Repeat the same procedure for each shrimp. These steps are tedious but essential for good results.

Marinating the shrimp: Place the shrimp in a large, sealable ziptop bag. Cover with half the amount of marinade. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes. Drain the shrimp and pat dry using paper towels. There should be as little liquid as possible.

Cooking the shrimp: In a large, heavy-bottom pan, heat the oil for about 1-2 minutes over high heat. Add the garlic. Cook until fragrant. Place all the shrimp in the pan,  one at a time. Cook for about 1-2 minutes until seared on one side, then start stir-frying the shrimp for another minute (if the pan is not large enough, you could stir-fry the shrimp in batches). The shrimp will start to open up like a butterfly. When the shrimp are cooked (the color will be a light orange), remove from the pan and set aside.

For the green beans: Fill a saucepan with water. Bring to a boil. Add the green beans and cook for 5 minutes. Drain, then transfer to an ice bath. Drain thoroughly. Sprinkle with salt.

For the carrots: Peel the carrot and shred using a mandoline or a food processor. Place the carrots in a bowl. Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon sugar. Drizzle with 3 tablespoons lemon juice. Toss well. Let sit for about 15 minutes. 

Assembly:

In a mixing bowl, combine the shrimp, lettuce, spinach, cucumbers, carrots, celery and green beans. Drizzle with the remaining lemon dressing. Toss well.

Serve into individual glass bowls, placing the shrimp on the rim of the glass. 

Serve immediately.

Bon appétit!


Tips

For the lemon dressing/marinade: In a blender, combine ½ cup apple cider vinegar, the zest and juice of 1 lemon, 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, ¼ teaspoon red chili flakes and 1 cup olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Blend until smooth. It's ready!

Published By: Jacqueline Pham on December 19, 2013.


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