This is one of those salads flexible enough to feed a crowd—or a summer lunch on the screen porch for two.  It combines small cooked pasta, chopped raw vegetables from the garden or the farm market, and whatever seafood you love.  Shrimp poached in warm spices sets the flavor note—add cold cooked crab, sautéed scallops, lobster, etc.  Adjust quantities for number of servings, and mix spices to taste.  Garnish with paprika and shredded basil—and there you have it.

  • Cook small pasta, like shells, to al dente—drain and chill
  • Mix spices in small bowl: salt, black pepper, paprika, turmeric, coriander, allspice or cinnamon, cumin, and red pepper—all to your taste—for 1 lb of shrimp, you’ll need about 3 tblsp of mixed spices
  • Remove shells from shrimp
  • In small saucepan, heat shells, ¾ cup water, and 2 tblsp of spice mix-simmer for 10-12 minutes, then strain solids from poaching liquid
  • In sauté pan, simmer poaching liquid, add shrimp and ½ chopped lemon—cover and cook for 2-3 minutes until done—if poaching scallops, add after removing shrimp, then poach for 1-2 minutes
  • Chill other seafood incl crab, etc, if using—cut seafood or leave whole–
  • Finely chop garden vegetables—celery, yellow pepper, baby squash, cucumber, tomatoes, red onions—reserve some for serving
  • For dressing:  combine mayonnaise, crushed capers, dill relish, lemon juice and some or all of remaining spice mixture
  • Combine all ingredients, mix gently with dressing and chill for at least an hour
  • Garnish with paprika, cut vegetables and basil

The Kitchen Hive

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