Shrimp Salad

"I cannot afford to feed shrimp to my family."

That is a lie from the demon of bad taste.

Are you thinking of the big, fat shrimp that sell for $15 a pound?

Leave those at the seafood counter, and walk with me to the freezer case.  Find a one pound bag of "salad shrimp" and be glad it's only $5.99 or something like that.

Then go buy a handful of really tasty olives, like the fat green ones stuffed with pimento, or some glossy black kalamatas.

Head out to your garden or farmer's market, and locate some green onions, bell pepper, summer squash, oregano, basil, tiny cherry tomatoes.  Check your fridge to see if you have some of the roasted red peppers I showed you how to make a couple weeks ago.  If you don't have them, get some at the store if they sound good to you.

Or ignore me, and pick out whatever vegetables, olives and herbs you think would be good in this.  I'm going for a light, lemony Mediterranean flavor profile.  Make what you'll love and your family will eat.  Then again, make what you love and your family will hate, and you can eat this for a few lunches in a row.

This shrimp salad is colorful, flavorful, and healthy.  From the basic finished recipe, you could choose to stir it into hot or cold pasta, serve it on a bed of mixed lettuces, stuff it into pita bread, or pile it on top of crostini or hearty crackers.  You can also eat it straight from the bowl, like I just did, cause I have to taste these things, you see, before I tell you all about them.

We're going to have ours atop lettuce. 

One pound of shrimp plus lots of veggies made plenty for salad for "most" of us this evening, and there will be leftover for Eric and I to each have a salad for lunch tomorrow.  I'm also roasting some chicken breasts so the non-shrimpy kids can make chicken salads.  So much for my preaching about how to feed picky kids . . .

Shrimp Salad

one pound "salad" size shrimp, thawed and roasted*  (see below)
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
grated zest from a whole lemon
1 tablespoon lemon juice (from half a lemon)
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
red chile flakes to taste

handful of slivered fresh basil
handful of slivered fresh oregano

one small yellow summer squash, sliced
1 cup small cherry tomatoes, left whole
1/2 cup olives, halved if large
3 scallions, chopped
one green bell pepper, chopped
1/2 cup sliced roasted red pepper (optional)

Combine dressing ingredients in a large bowl, whisking to mix well.  Stir in the fresh herbs.  Add the vegetables, toss with the dressing.

*For extra flavor, you can oven roast your shrimp.  Take either raw or cooked shrimp, drizzle with a bit of olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Spread out on a baking sheet and roast in a 425 degree oven until they just start to caramelize (a bit of browning) - watch the pre-cooked ones carefully, it happens in under 10 minutes.

Add shrimp to the salad, tossing to coat well in the dressing.  Refrigerate for at least an hour. 

JillFish, Salads1 Comment