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Shrimp and Avocado Salad


May is a fun month and there are many things to celebrate – Mother’s Day, Cinco de Mayo and Memorial Day, to name a few.  By now your farmers markets should be up and running. Taking a Saturday morning stroll through the market is a delight. Pick up some seasonal supplies and head for your boat. I was chatting with the chef, David Russell, at the St. Thomas Yacht Club, and he gave me the Tomato Cup recipe and suggested I try the recipe with those freshly picked tomatoes.

Prep time: 20 minutes. Serves: 4
4 large beefsteak tomatoes
Chiffonade of Basil
Balsamic Vinegar
Olive oil
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Scallions, cut on the bias
Balsamic reduction
Sourdough crostini

Cut tops off tomatoes with a knife. Remove flesh from inside of tomato, chop and place in a bowl, pour a little balsamic vinegar and olive oil over, sprinkle with salt and pepper, toss lightly. Fill the tomatoes. To serve: Pour a stream of balsamic reduction across plate; place tomato on top with two basil leaves, a crostini and sprinkle with Chiffonade of Basil.

Prep time: 20 minutes. Serves: 4
1 lb large shrimp, peeled & deveined
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp salt, divided
1 fresh lemon, squeezed (about 2-1/2 tbsp juice)
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 tsp whole-grain Dijon mustard
1 (10 oz) package romaine salad
2 cups cherry tomatoes, quartered
1 cup shredded carrots (about 2 carrots)
1 cup fresh white whole-kernel corn
2 ripe peeled avocados, pits removed, each cut into 8 wedges
Cooking spray

Coat sauté pan with cooking spray and heat to medium-high. Sprinkle shrimp with paprika and pepper. Add shrimp to pan; cook 2 minutes on each side or until shrimp turns pink. Sprinkle with salt; toss to coat. While the shrimp cooks, combine lemon juice, oil, and mustard in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add lettuce; toss to coat. To serve: Arrange about 1-1/2 cups lettuce mixture on each of 4 plates. Top each serving with about 6 shrimp, 1/2 cup tomatoes, 1/4 cup carrot, 1/4 cup corn, and 4 avocado wedges.

Prep time: 20 minutes. Serves: 8 – 10.
5 to 6 cups of variety of fresh fruits (be creative):
Bananas, peeled & sliced
Cherries, pitted
Green &/or red grapes, halved
Kiwi fruit, peeled & sliced
Pears, peeled & sliced
Peaches, peeled & sliced
Mango, skinned, cored & sliced
Oranges, skinned & cut-up
Pineapple, cored, peeled & sliced
Watermelon, flesh removed & cut into bite-size pieces
Melon (cantaloupe & honeydew), flesh removed & cut into bite-size pieces.

Make Fruit Dressing (recipe below); set aside to cool and until ready to use. In a large bowl or container, combine all the mixed prepared fruits. Pour prepared Fruit Dressing over the cutup fruits; gently toss to coat all the fruit. Serve family style or for a gourmet look, serve in chilled cocktail glasses. To store, cover and refrigerate for several hours before serving.

Fruit Salad Dressing cooking time: 5 minutes.
Fruit Salad Dressing Cooling time: 30 minutes
1 lemon, grated zest (rind) and juice
1 lime, grated zest (rind) and juice
1 orange, grated zest (rind) and juice
1 egg, well beaten
1 cup granulated sugar

Note: Grate the zest off of the citrus fruits first before juicing them. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the zest and juice from lemon, lime and orange. Add the beaten egg and sugar. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture comes just to a boil; let boil 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and let cool before tossing with the fruit salad.

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