Saturday, June 2, 2012

Shrimp Salad - Skewered (or Sans Skewered!)

      Last Thursday, a few of my teacher buddies came over for a pitch-in lunch to celebrate the end of the school year.  Our last day was Tuesday, and I spent most of Wednesday putting flowers in pots and planting annuals in the back yard.  I thought it would be a snap just to spiff the house up before everyone came Thursday morning.  I planned to make the Skewered Shrimp above, however the cleaning was a bit more involved than I anticipated. When the doorbell rang at noon - I had to shove the skewers in the drawer and go for "Plan B" - Avocado Shrimp Salad.  Since a couple people have asked for the recipe, I decided to post both the skewered shrimp and the salad.  The recipes for the dressing and marinade are via my mom, I believe, from Bon Appetite.  Growing up, this was a standard dish for showers and fancy parties. I think the Avocado Shrimp Salad would make a fabulous shrimp roll filling for some crusty French bread. The recipes are below as well as a couple tricks to assist assembling them.

I bought the biggest already cooked shrimp I could find, and covered them in cold water to defrost.

For the skewers, I used a carrot peeler to remove the skin of the cucumber so it gave a striped look when sliced.

Ready for skewering;  I cut up peppers in triangle shapes, used lemon wedges, cherry tomatoes, and cucumbers.  Button mushrooms would also be a great addition.

Marinade for the Shrimp
 3 tablespoons olive oil
 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard (I used country Dijon)
Mix together and Pour over cooked, rinsed, and drained shrimp.  Let sit in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes while you continue with the rest of the recipe.

Dipping Sauce/Salad Dressing
1 cup mayonnaise (I used Hellmann’s light)
1 garlic clove minced or put through a press
2 tablespoons Heinz chili sauce
½ teaspoon hot pepper sauce
¼ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon of fresh chopped chives
1 ½ teaspoons of chopped fresh dill
Whisk all ingredients together. Cover and chill until ready to use

Avocado for Salad or Garnish on Skewer Platter
Peel and cube 1 large avocado
Squirt the juice of 1/2 a lemon over the avocado.

Option 1:  Avocado and Shrimp Salad
Drain the shrimp and add it to the avocado. Gently fold in the mayo mixture – just enough to coat. Garnish with an extra dill sprig or two.  Cover and chill until ready to serve.

Option 2:  Shrimp Salad Skewers
Using wooden skewers, thread on the drained marinated shrimp and pieces of colorful pepper, lemon wedges, cherry tomatoes, and cucumbers.  Button mushrooms are also an option if you like them.  Serve with the above mayo mxture or even regular shrimp cocktail sauce. 

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