Sunday, June 12, 2011

Watermelon and Cress Salad with Grilled Shrimp and Hearts of Palm

We had a most enjoyable weekend.  We played in the dirt (we have a family garden plot), did much needed yard work.   In the evening we drank cocktails with friends in our community garden patch, and enjoyed light summer meals.   If only we could do this more often....

One of the meals that was a highlight of our evening was this main entree salad.  The subtle sweetness of the watermelon is a nice contrast to the grilled shrimp and hearts of palm.  The crumbled cheese adds just enough salty flavor to make it all work together.


Watermelon and Cress Salad with Grilled Shrimp and Hearts of Palm
Serves 2

Ingredients:
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
8 oz. jumbo shrimp (21-25 per lb), peeled and deveined
3 canned hearts of palm, drained and patted dry (about half of a 14-oz can.)
1 tablespoon champagne vinegar
1 teaspoon minced shallot
6 oz. watercress or upland cress, separated into small sprigs, thicker stems trimmed
1/2 cup packed fresh basil, thinly sliced
12 oz. watermelon, thinly sliced into narrow wedges, rind removed, seeded if necessary
3 oz. ricotta salata, crumbled (about 3/4 cup) Note: we used feta

Directions:
Prepare a medium-high gas or charcoal grill fire.  meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk 1-1/2 tablespoons of the olive oil, 2 teaspoons of the mustard, the lemon zest, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.  Toss the shrimp in the marinade and let sit for about 10 minutes.

Thread the shrimp onto metal skewers.  Toss the hearts of palm with 1/2 tablespoon of the olive oil and 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper.  Grill the shrimp and the hearts of palm, flipping once, until they have nice grill marks and the shrimp are just cooked through, about 4 minutes total.  When cool enough to handle, halve the hearts of palm lengthwise, and then cut crosswise into thirds.  remove the shrimp from the skewers.

In a small bowl, whisk the remaining 1 teaspoon mustard with the vinegar, shallot, and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Whisk in the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil in a thin stream.  Add more salt and pepper to taste.

In a large bowl, toss the cress and basil with just enough of the dressing to lightly coat.  Season to taste with salt.  Divide the greens between 2 plates.  Top with the watermelon wedges and drizzle lightly with the remaining dressing.  Top with the hearts of palm, shrimp, and crumbled ricotta salata or similar cheese.

Enjoy!
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31 comments:

Maris (In Good Taste) said...

Not only does this look so delicious but your presentation is so pretty!

From Beyond My Kitchen Window said...

I love the look of this salad. Last year was the first time I enjoyed watermelon in a salad and it was delicious. Looking forward to summer when then watermelons are ripe and juicy.

Lea Ann said...

I love fruit and shrimp salads. This looks wonderful Velva. I love that you had cocktails in the garden plot. :-)

The Absence of Alternatives said...

SUMMER! Stop hoarding summer over there. Send it over here!

Farmchick said...

Very nice! I have not used hearts of palm before.

My Little Space said...

Hmmm.....my...what a chilling mixed up salad! I love the addition of watermelon. So juicy delicious. Hope you're enjoying your weekend.
Blessings, Kristy

Chris's Gourmet Fashion said...

Your salad looks lovely. I often use a similar marinade so I can taste that shrimp through my laptop screen :) Love the watermelon addition to contrast the taste. Sounds like a wonderful weekend.

Claudia said...

A perfect meal for after "playing in the dirt." Thinking of switching my dinner plans - for will be in the dirt during the afternoon!

tasteofbeirut said...

I love heart of palm, been eating since I was a kid in salads; love this shrimp salad, I could eat this salad several times a week, happily!

That Girl said...

Sounds like a great weekend! I love being able to do what I want and what needs to be done in the same time frame.

Parsley Sage said...

Awesome salad! That's such a perfect weekend, friend yummy :)

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

That salad looks so refreshing and satisfying!! So glad you enjoyed a weekend with friends, digging in the dirt and great food! blessings ~ tanna

SavoringTime in the Kitchen said...

This salad certainly looks summery and delicious. What a wonderful combination of flavors!

Foodness Gracious said...

Great looking plate!

Kitchen Belleicious said...

first of all it is just beautiful and I love the combonation of flavors you got goin on. Watermelon with the watercress is so creative!

Cooking Creation said...

I love all of the different flavor elements in this! It sounds so yummy!

The Japanese Redneck said...

We luv playing in the dirt!

Looks good. Cress is not something I can remember seeing around here.

TKW said...

I'm salivating. That is summer on a plate.

Mimi's Kitchen said...

Such a tasty reward for working in the dirt.
Mimi

Erica said...

What a perfect summer meal,Velva! Wonderful combo!

Michael Toa said...

What a wonderful, refreshing salad for the summer! Yum! I just need a glass of well-chilled bubbly or wine :)

Barbara said...

Really pretty salad, Velva. I do like watermelon in a salad...made one last weekend. But your idea of hearts of palm and some shrimp on top is perfect...a salad meal to love.

Kim said...

Well, you know how I feel about shrimp. Lately I just can't get enough of it. This looks unique and fantastic. I'd love to be indulging in it right now!

P.S. I am so glad to follow you along on your travels and am so glad you and your family are having a wonderful time. Keep safe.

merrilymarylee said...

Wish I'd read this before I went to the store. Tomorrow...! When I saw the picture, I realized that it would be perfect for the family when we're at the beach in July. Then I did a rough estimate of the cost of preparing enough for 10 people and decided that it's a grownup recipe for just the two of us. :)

Raina said...

This looks wonderful, incredible mix of flavors:)

LindyLouMac in Italy said...

Calming my whirling mind with some blog reading this morning and your blog is just what I needed, this dish in particular sounds so appealing.

Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

I thought that I had put a comment on this but it seems I did not!! It looks quite delicious. Diane

We Are Not Martha said...

I've recently developed a watercress addiction.. combine it with watermelon and shrimp (my foods of summer) and I'm in love!! :)

Sues

Miss Meat and Potatoes said...

I adore watermelon in summer salads but haven't seen this combo yet. Love, love, love. I'll be putting this on my 'must make' summer list. Thanks for sharing!

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

Hehe and here we are in the depths of Winter and all I want to do is have some of this lovely salad and be in Summer!

elisabeth@foodandthriftfinds said...

Velva-Love the beautiful and refreshng salad of watercress, paired with the watermelon,and hearts of palm. I could just make a meal out of that and eat a huge plate of it...and I'm not even vegetarian:D

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