First day of spring

20 Mar

First day of spring! With snow on the ground, we are deluding ourselves, but patio days in Lilly can’t be far behind. Time to think pink.

For the shrimp:

1 lemon, halved

1 bay leaf

1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns

1 pound extra-large shrimp (21 to 25 per pound), peeled and deveined

For the salad and vinaigrette:

2 medium ruby red grapefruits, segmented and juice reserved

1 large avocado, pitted, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice

2 tablespoons juice from 1 lime

1/2 teaspoon honey

1 1/2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint leaves

2 ounces snow peas (about 24), strings removed and cut lengthwise into 1/8-inch strips

16 Bibb lettuce leaves, washed and dried

To poach the shrimp: Place 3 cups water in a medium saucepan. Squeeze the juice of both lemon halves into the water; add the squeezed halves to the water, and add the bay leaf and peppercorns. Bring to a boil over high heat and boil for 2 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and add the shrimp. Cover and let stand off the heat for 8 minutes. Have ready a medium bowl filled with ice water.

Drain the shrimp into a colander, discarding the lemon halves, bay leaf and peppercorns. Immediately transfer the shrimp to the ice water to stop the cooking and chill, about 3 minutes. Drain the shrimp and transfer them to a large dry bowl; refrigerate until needed. (The shrimp can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.)

To prepare the vinaigrette: Place the reserved grapefruit juice in a 1/4-cup measure. If necessary, add enough water to equal 1/4 cup. Puree the juice, one-quarter of the avocado, lime juice, honey, ginger, salt and pepper together in a blender until smooth.

To serve: Remove the bowl of chilled shrimp from the refrigerator and add the grapefruit, mint, snow peas and remaining avocado. Pour the dressing over the mixture and toss gently to coat. Arrange the lettuce leaves on four plates and top with the shrimp mixture. Drizzle each salad with any dressing left in the bowl.

makes four servings


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