Spring Salad with Shrimp and Toasted Bread

Spring Salad with Shrimp and Toasted Bread

Recipe Inspired by Bon Appétit.

The weather is warmer and I've been craving something light and bright. This salad brings together some of spring's finest vegetables and is topped with a spicy, bright dressing, warm shrimp and toasted bread cubes. The bread cubes aren't technically croutons because I like to toast fresh cubes sourdough or country white bread in olive oil instead of using stale bread. The end result is something that's crispy on the outside but still chewy on the inside, PLUS, warm bread tastes amazing on a salad!

GRADE

Serves: 4

Cost: $$

Skill Level: Easy

Time to Make: 35 minutes

INGREDIENTS

DRESSING

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

4 garlic cloves

Sriracha, to taste

1/2 bunch of fresh chives

10 mint leaves, plus 6 or 7 more leaves for serving

3/4 cup sour cream

1/4 cup heavy cream

3 tablespoons olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

SALAD

1/2 Seedless cucumber

3 scallions

4 radishes

1 cup sugar snap peas

1/2 cup cherry tomatoes

1/2 head of romaine lettuce

1/2 pound large shrimp

1 tablespoon butter

2 thick slices of sourdough bread

Olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

METHOD

Prep Ingredients: Roughly chop the cucumber and radishes. Thinly slice the scallions. Quarter the radishes. Thinly slice the sugar snap peas. Halve the cherry tomatoes and add them to a small bowl with salt and pepper. Chop the leafy parts of the romaine lettuce. Reserve 6 or 7 mint leaves for garnish. Pat the shrimp dry and season with salt and pepper. Cut the bread cubes into 1-inch cubes. 

Make the Dressing: In a food processor, combine the chives, 10 mint leaves, the garlic cloves, and lemon juice and pulse until everything is finely chopped. Add the sour cream and olive oil and pulse until smooth. Slowly add the cream and pulse until the dressing has thinned out to your desired consistency. The dressing shouldn't be too thick and should be a good drizzling consistency. Season with salt and pepper. Add Sriracha to taste and stir to combine. Transfer to a small bowl and refrigerate. Note: the dressing may thicken up in the fridge, add a bit of heavy cream to thin it out and leave at room temperature for 10 minutes before serving.

Prepare the Salad: In a large bowl, combine the cucumbers, scallions, radishes, sugar snap peas, and romaine lettuce and toss to evenly distribute everything. Keep in the fridge until ready to serve.

Make the Toasted Bread and Shrimp: In a medium skillet, heat two tablespoons of olive oil over medium high until very hot. Add the bread and season with salt and pepper. Toss, adding more olive oil if the bread seems dry. Cook, tossing regularly, until the bread becomes golden brown and crusty, about 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and keep warm. Carefully wipe out the pan.

In the same pan, heat the butter over medium high until melted and frothy. Add the shrimp in a single layer and cook for 1-2 minutes before flipping and cooking an additional 1-2 minutes until completely opaque and cooked through. Remove from heat.

Finish the Salad: Just before serving, toss the seasoned tomatoes with the rest of the vegetables.

To Serve: Divide the salad between plates and top with shrimp and warm bread. Tear the reserved mint leaves in half and sprinkle on top. Drizzle with salad dressing. Enjoy!

Designer and photographer living in NYC. I work as a design manager in ed tech and I make tasty recipes in my spare time!