Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Dill and Shrimp Salad

I told you yesterday that we would discuss the making of this most delicious salad.  I made it over the weekend and served it two ways; wrapped in Butter Lettuce (Boston Bibb) and atop chopped Hearts of Romaine.  Either way was delicious.  Of course, served on a warm croissant with a little butter wouldn't be too bad.  But I am laying off the bread for awhile.  So, here goes with the assembly of Dill and Shrimp Salad.

We start with 3 pounds of uncooked, large shrimp that have been defrosted, unless you bought them fresh, which would be nice.  These are rinsed and placed in a dutch oven with 2 quarts of boiling water, salt to taste and the juice of one half of a lemon.  Boil them 3 - 5 minutes, then drain and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking.  Leaving them to cook longer than 5 minutes makes them rubbery.

I gave a rough chop to the celery.  I like it a little large in this recipe.  I remove a good deal from the bottom of each celery stalk because I do not like that white, flared part at the end where it attaches to the stalk, so I actually used 3 stalks of celery.  I will leave the recipe stating 2 stalks because that may be enough for you.  It will not really matter.  The salad will be delicious with either 2 or 3 stalks of celery.  And the green onions, of course.

I coarsely chopped three green onions, leaving in some of the green.  I do not go to the very end, but I like incorporating some of the dark green in any salad because it adds a pungent flavor to whatever you are making.  It's a little more bitter than the white part of the onion and I like that.

One tablespoon of finely chopped fresh dill.  This is one of the most important ingredients, hence the name Dill and Shrimp Salad.  Use fresh dill.  No dried dill in this dish.  And remove the dill from the stem.  It takes a little longer but it is worth the effort.  I would suggest using a generous tablespoon.

I added the onion to the celery and then added the maonnaise.

Then the lemon and lime juice and the white pepper and the dill.

And this is what the dressing looked like for the shrimp.

A lovely bowl of freshly cooked shrimp.

And a view from above of that same bowl.  Before adding the dressing I sliced each shrimp in half, bisecting body from tail.  I used large shrimp for this dish.  I find that cutting each shrimp in half when using large shrimp makes for a more enjoyable eating experience.  If you used medium shrimp, most likely it would not be necessary to cut them.  And small shrimp certainly would not need to be cut.  I would not use small shrimp for this dish.

I added the dressing to the shrimp and mixed it all together.

Another view of my creation.

And finally, the salad was assembled.

This is a little trick that I use when making these kinds of salads.  I place it in a large Ziploc bag and place that bag in the refrigerator.  It spreads the salad out so that all of it marinates evenly.  After about an hour, I turn the bag over and let the salad marinate on the other side.  You can leave this in the refrigerator and turn it periodically until time for your party.  This is a better way to marinate the salad rather than leaving it in a bowl where only the shrimp in the very bottom will get the advantage of marinating.  You would constantly be stirring and stirring an stirring and in the end the salad would still not be fully marinated.

And finally, the shrimp over romaine lettuce.
 This is so incredible that I am making it again tonight.  It is perfect for lunch - or dinner.  I would definitely serve this to company.  Before I wrote this post I added this to the Food and Recipe page.  So if you are interested in giving it a try, you can get your ingredient list there.

While I was on the Food and Recipe page, I removed the Crab and Cheese Souffle recipe.  I did not care for that.  First of all, it did not rise properly, I believe, because of the added crab.  Secondly, because it did not rise properly, it was very heavy and must too rich for my taste.  I think we need to just stick to good old cheese souffle with gruyere.  Those are divine and so easy to make.
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