Spicy "Slap Ya Mama"
Skillet Shrimp Salad
I've been loving my "Slap Ya Mama" white pepper blend this spring and shrimp is my favorite way to use it. I wanted to highlight the seasoning in this recipe and let it shine so I pan seared the shrimp instead of stir-frying with other ingredients so the shrimp really pop in this salad.
To get a great sear on any protein, you need to get the pan super hot. Cast iron is great for this job. I don't use any oil in the pan for this recipe any more. The shrimp has just enough oil from the marinade that it cooks perfectly without any extra.
Make sure not to crowd those beautiful morsels. They need to have lots of space between them so the moisture on the outside of the shrimp evaporates quickly creating the sear and sealing the shrimp juices inside.
The shrimp will probably stick immediately when added to a properly heated pan. This is good! No stir-frying in this dish. Let the shrimp sear undisturbed for about 2 minutes then check to see if it's loosening from the pan. it will naturally release when it's ready.
When the shrimp releases from the pan it's time to turn it over and sear the other side. Again, let it sear undisturbed for about 2 minutes. When it releases from the pan easily, remove it to keep warm in a bowl close by until all the shrimp are done.
Another way to know if the shrimp is done is to sear them until they are opaque and shaped like the letter "C". Try not to cook them until they are the shape of the letter "O" because O stands for overdone.
Before searing the shrimp you will want to get the salad ready.
This is a simple salad of hearty greens, chickpeas, tomatoes, red onion slices, cucumbers and some of my home made bread croutons. I toss it with a spicy "Slap Ya Mama" mustard vinaigrette before topping it with the "Slap Ya Mama" skillet shrimp.
The vinaigrette is quick to make and doubles as the marinade for the shrimp that I first dust generously with "Slap Ya Mama" White Pepper Blend Cajun Seasoning.
Here's a step by step look at the making of this fantastic meal.
I love that meals like this need so little prep and cleaning up before cooking. Often the prep part of a recipe can be the most time consuming part so in this case I was also striving to develop a recipe that I new I could make without a lot of fuss at the end of a busy day.
Start by thawing out the shrimp the night before in the refrigerator. Making the salad and vinaigrette is very simple and the shrimp cook in less than 5 minutes.
I'm very lucky to be able to step into my garden during the spring and summer and pick a few handfuls of various greens for the salad but in the winter, I buy a nice package of power greens for this. Cleaned and ready to go.
Who knew healthy could be so easy?
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Spicy Slap Ya Mama
Skillet Shrimp Salad
1 pound large raw gulf shrimp
3 1/2 teaspoons Slap Ya Mama Pepper Seasoning
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon minced shallot
1 tablespoon finely minced fresh parsley
3 tablespoons champagne or white wine vinegar
1/3 cup quality Olive Oil
1 1/2 teaspoons spicy brown or dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
6 cups mixed salad greens
1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
1/4 cup cucumber slices cut in half
2 small meaty tomatoes sliced into wedges
14 oz can Chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 lemon sliced into wedges
Home made croutons
For the Slap Ya Mama Vinaigrette:
Mix the minced garlic, shallot and parsley in a bowl or jar. Add the spicy brown mustard, 1/2 teaspoon Slap Ya Mama seasoning, olive oil, vinegar, salt & pepper and whisk or shake until well blended and creamy.
For the Slap Ya Mama Shrimp:
Peel and devein the shrimp then marinade for 15-30 minutes in 3 tablespoons of the vinaigrette and 3 teaspoons of Slap Ya Mama Pepper blend.
Start heating a dry cast iron skillet on medium high heat until very hot while preparing the salad.
For the Salad:
Add the mixed greens, red onion, chickpeas, and croutons to a large salad bowl. Toss the salad with the rest of the Spicy brown mustard vinaigrette.
To Cook the Shrimp:
When the pan is very hot, add the shrimp to the skillet and don't move them. Sear them in batches being careful not to crowd them in the pan. When they naturally release from the pan (about 2 minutes) turn them over and sear the other side. As the shrimp finish, remove them to a clean bowl to keep warm.
When all of the shrimp are seared, divide the salad between 2 or 3 large shallow bowls and top each with the shrimp. Serve immediately with the lemon wedges and some crusty bread.