October 21, 2017

Chef on a diet: Sicilian seafood salad


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This weekend was my father’s 70th birthday party.  The menu was an all-Italian appetizer feast and we wanted a diverse menu to showcase some of my dad’s favorite dishes.

One ingredient came to mind right away, scungilli.  This is his all time favorite.  Instead of the usual marinara with garlic I decided on a light and colorful salad to round out the buffet.

The best part about this dish is how healthy it is.  If you are on a diet then this is the warm weather dish for you.  If you’re not on a diet then you will really love it because you get to have two portions.  Try it out for your next sunset picnic or quick and easy weeknight dinner.

Sicilian seafood salad

  • 29 oz can sliced scungilli drained and rinsed
  • 1lb peeled raw shrimp
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 small red onion thin slivers
  • 3 stalks celery thin sliced
  • 1 cup pitted big green olives halved (not salad olives if you can help it)
  • 2 cloves garlic sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup whole parsley leaves
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flake
  • Juice 1 lemon
  • Salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

Place first 5 ingredients in pot and cover with cold water.  Bring to boil then reduce to simmer.  Cook until shrimp turns pink.  Pour all into strainer and remove vegetables.  Run under cold water to cool down seafood.  Put drained seafood into large mixing bowl.  Add all remaining ingredients and mix well.  Adjust for salt and pepper.  Cover and let sit to mingle flavors 15 minutes.

For dinner:

Serve portions over salad such as baby Arugula or chopped romaine.  Lemon wedges and sea salt on side.  My wife likes to have some extra olives on hand while eating so I always buy extra.

Consider drinking ice water with lemon and mint or crisp cold white wine.

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