Tender butter lettuce and sweet rosy pink grapefruit form the bed for a gently spiced mound of shrimp with just a hint of heat. This Shrimp Salad with Grapefruit and Mint has it all: shrimp, avocado, shallots, carrot, cilantro, and grapefruit, all topped off with some fresh mint and crunchy salted peanuts.
I made this elegant Shrimp Salad with Grapefruit and Mint on the weekend for my brothers and my sisters-in-law who had come to wish Laura well before she flies off on another adventure. I’m so lucky that they are so appreciative when I cook for them. We all agreed that this shrimp salad is a keeper. It has so many different and contrasting layers of flavour and texture. This dish is definitely not your ho-hum shrimp cocktail served in a soda fountain glass with cocktail sauce!
Once Spring decides it’s really here to stay, Denis and I will be itching to put the boat in the water and head out into the Gulf Islands. Right now I can see the water sparkling in the sunshine on the bay, but it’s still a little cool here for a day on the ocean. This year, we have resolved to put the prawn and crab traps down more often. I get a huge amount of satisfaction from being able to harvest vegetables, berries and herbs from our garden and we’re grateful that we’re able to gather fresh fish and shellfish from local waters too.
In the meantime, I will have to make do with West Coast shrimp from our local seafood market. It’s fresh and tasty and it’s absolutely delicious in this Shrimp Salad with Grapefruit and Mint!
Tender butter lettuce and sweet rosy pink grapefruit form the bed for a gently spiced mound of shrimp with just a hint of heat. This salad has it all: shrimp, avocado, shallots, carrot, cilantro, and grapefruit, all topped off with some fresh mint and crunchy salted peanuts. At first glance, these ingredients seem like unlikely partners, but they work perfectly well together. I served it with Fennel-Crusted Salmon, Crispy Lemon Oven-Roasted Potatoes, fresh asparagus with toasted sesame seeds and roasted fennel. We finished off the meal with some Caramel Pecan Crunch Ice Cream.
This recipe seems like a lot of work, but it comes together quickly. I like to do as much meal preparation as I can before cooking dinner for friends, so I have written the recipe this way, presuming that you do too! Most of it can easily be prepared in advance and tucked into the fridge so that you just have to assemble it before dinner time. Shrimp cannot be marinated much more than 20 minutes as it will break down and turn mushy, so leave this step until a short time before serving. And if you like fresh seafood salads as much as we do, you might also like this Citrus Avocado Salad with Shrimp and Smoky Vinaigrette or this super easy Chili Lime Shrimp with Fresh Salsa.
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (1 medium lime)
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed grapefruit juice (1/2 small grapefruit)
- 1 teaspoon coconut aminos or soy sauce (or gluten-free tamari)
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- 1 teaspoon sriracha sauce
- ⅛ teaspoon salt, plus extra for salting the grapefruit
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- ½ pound cooked and peeled pink shrimp
- ¼ cup grated carrot
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- 1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and cut into medium dice
- 1 tablespoon high-heat vegetable oil, such as avocado or peanut
- ⅓ cup thinly sliced shallots
- 1 pink grapefruit
- butter lettuce leaves
- ¼ cup roughly chopped dry-roasted, salted peanuts, for garnish
- ¼ cup fresh mint leaves, cut into thin ribbons, for garnish
- Some parts of this recipe can be made ahead of time:
- In a small jar, prepare the marinade by mixing the lime juice, grapefruit juice, soy sauce, fish sauce, sriracha sauce, salt and sugar. Store in the fridge.
- Chop the shallots, sauté them in the avocado or peanut oil in a medium sauté pan over medium-high heat until caramelized, about 10 minutes. Let them cool and set aside.
- Cut the peel off the grapefruit, remove any white pith and slice horizontally into ½ inch rounds. Then slice into ½ inch wide strips, and then into medium cubes. Salt them lightly and store in the fridge.
- Wash and dry enough lettuce leaves for four servings.
- Grate the carrot and refrigerate.
- Just before serving, chop the cilantro and avocado.
- Rinse the shrimp and pat dry. Put the shrimp in a large bowl and add the carrots, cilantro, avocado and shallots. Add the marinade mixture and toss. Let the shrimp marinate for 20 minutes in the refrigerator.
- Tear the lettuce leaves into bite-sized pieces and portion into four serving dishes. Spoon the grapefruit cubes and then the shrimp mixture on top, drizzling with a little of the excess marinade.
- Garnish with chopped peanuts and mint and serve.
This recipe is from Becky Selengut’s fabulous cookbook, Good Fish: Sustainable Seafood Recipes from the Pacific Coast.
If you’re a seafood lover, you need to buy this book. It has seventy-five incredible recipes with wine-pairings. It also includes a host of useful instructions for handling and preparing all types of seafood.
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