Thursday, August 7, 2008

Shrimp and Asparagus Salad with Prickly Pear Vinaigrette

The other day, I posted a plea for help on what to do with my prickly pears that I discovered at the farmer's market. Well, I didn't get much help so I came up with a couple of things on my own. I knew I wanted to have one recipe that was savory and one that was sweet. For the savory recipe I settled on a salad. I decided to use the prickly pears in a vinaigrette and I picked canola oil for the vinaigrette so as not to over power the delicate flavor of the pears. It was so good and fruity and perfectly light for the summer. It was also a perfect end to a day where I found out I am going to be attending one of the Tasting Pavillions at Slow Food Nation!! I am so excited and honored to be involved in this historic food event. To find out how you can get tickets, click here.

Shrimp Salad with Prickly Pear Vinaigrette

Makes 2 servings

For the salad:
2 handfuls organic baby spinach
10 shrimp, peeled and de-veined
10 thin asparagus stalks, cut into bite sized pieces
2 tsp organic, extra-virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1 shallot, chopped
2 tbsp cilantro, chopped (optional)
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

For the vinaigrette:
1/4 c prickly pear puree (about 2 prickly pears)
2 tsp canola oil
Juice from 1/2 lime
1 tsp honey
1 small green Chile, finely chopped
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper

To make the puree:
Slice open the prickly pears. Squeeze the pears through your hands into a wire sieve fitted over a small bowl. With a silicone spatula, squeeze the pulp through the sieve and discard the seeds.

To make the vinaigrette:
Whisk together all of the ingredients.

To make the shrimp and asparagus:
In a medium skillet heat 2 tsp oil. Add shallots and garlic and cook over medium-low heat until softened, but not browned, about 2 minutes. Add asparagus and cook for 2-3 minutes until bright green, but still crisp. Add shrimp and cook for 1-2 minutes on each side until pink and cooked through.

To make the salad:
Lay spinach on the plate, top with the asparagus and shrimp mixture and spoon the vinaigrette over everything. Garnish with cilantro if desired.

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Tom Aarons said...

This looks really light and tasty and summery. Yum!

Prudy said...

That is so gorgeous! I'd love to give it a try.

Jerry said...

Sounds fabulous!

Kevin said...

That salad looks good! I like using shrimp in salads.

[eatingclub] vancouver || js said...

I've never had prickly pear before, so I can't be of much help. I was hoping to tag along on your road to prickly pear heaven, if you don't mind. ;) This looks good.