I have been having an internal dialog of late. “Should I cannibalize my blogspot posts??” I mean, I WOULD like to have all of my content all in one place. There are food ideas that are definitely worth revisiting. And dammit, I’m pissed that I lost access to that body of work. Fuck it.
Here’s a really yummy salad that deserves to be eaten again. And I know when I write ‘salad’ some people sigh and roll their eyes. It’s not the normal rabbit food bowl of greens though. (Not that I don’t get the craving for leafy green goodness!) Vinaigrette with vegetables and poached shrimp. That’s a meal - not something that is going to have you standing in front of the refrigerator in the dark poking through various containers for a bite here and a bite there.
This salad revolves around butter beans, one of my personal favorites - and one of the reasons why I have some trouble with the Whole30 and Paleo thing. I LIKE legumes, and since I have personally picked and shelled butter beans (as well as various other items of produce) I am going to count them in for my ‘hunter gatherer-esque’ diet. Judge if you give a shit.
Begin by making a simple vinaigrette.
• Zest from half a lemon, minced very fine
• Juice from 1 large or 2 small lemons
• 1 Large tablespoon of whole grain mustard
• Generous splash of good olive oil
• Salt, pepper and a pinch of crushed red pepper to taste
• 1 Clove of garlic grated or minced fine
Whisk all ingredients together and let marry for at least ten minutes, though more time is better. This is a great dressing, so you might as well go ahead and double or triple the recipe.
While the vinaigrette is melding, cook your butter beans. For this recipe I cooked about a pint of beans, which when mixed with the rest of the ingredients made an appetizer type portion for two.
Bring beans to a simmer in chicken stock with a couple of pieces of smoky bacon, a chunk of onion and a couple of smashed garlic cloves.
When the butter beans are tender (though not split and releasing their starch) drain and put the pot liquor and aromatics back into the pot and return to a simmer. Poach shrimp (I cooked 10 for 2) in the liquid just until done. When shrimp are still warm, peal carefully and add both warm butter beans and shrimp to the vinaigrette along with 3 to 4 slivered scallions. Toss together and let cool. (Save pot liquor to drink or use as the base for a soup.)
When ready to serve, shave one fennel bulb, chop ½ a red pepper, mince ½ red jalapeno with the seeds and veins removed, chop a handful of parsley, and chop about a tablespoon of fennel fronds. Toss these items with the marinated butter bean, shrimp and scallion mixture and serve. Drizzle with a little more of the vinaigrette and a little bit of hot sauce.
Eat. Feel healthy. Eating real food is what we should truly be aiming for. I know that legumes CAN have some inflammatory effects for some people - so use common sense. You should always use the idea of moderation for everything - including moderation. And cupcakes don’t suck.