Friday, March 16, 2012

Shrimp & Spinach Salad With Bacon Dressing

Oh yes...it's a salad night recipe!  This one is pretty easy, and super hearty.  You really feel like you ate a meal after this baby.  I can't remember  where I got the recipe from, but it's a keeper.  I left out a couple of things, and of course might have added some in.

Cooking is really about being innovative with the items you have on hand.  Just because a recipe says you require something, doesn't mean you really do.  If you need carrots, but only have celery, use them!  If you need tomato paste, but only have tomato sauce, or better yet, fresh tomatoes, use them!  You can swap out herbs, leave out foods you don't like, add foods that you do.  It's all fun and games in the kitchen, so go nuts!


Shrimp & Spinach Salad With Bacon Dressing
8oz shrimp (I used a medium sized bag)
2 hard boiled eggs, sliced
6oz baby spinach (I used about half a large container)
1c sliced mushrooms (I left these out - wasn't running to the grocery store for 1 item)
6 strips of bacon cut in small pieces (I used about 10; who doesn't love bacon??)
1 red onion sliced
2 T pine nuts (left these out...no thanks)
3T red wine vinegar (I used 9 T)
1 T Dijon mustard (I used 3 T)
Olive Oil
(I also added some chopped celery to the mix - about 3 stalks)

Cook bacon until crisp (here is my confession.  I never cook bacon in a frying pan.  It makes my house smell greasy, I smell it on my hair and clothes forever, and it's way too fatty.  I layer the slices on paper towel on a plate and pop them in the microwave.  The paper towel soaks up all of the grease, and it smells for all of five minutes.  They are done painlessly, in a lower fat way, without hot oil splashing on me and burning my oh so delicate skin...).  Add onion and mushrooms (oops..) to hot skillet until onions begin to brown, about 3 minutes (my skillet had onions and celery).  Season shrimp with salt & pepper to taste, and add them to the skillet along with pine nuts (again, no thanks).  When shrimp are pink (mine already were since they were cooked and not raw, I just wanted to warm them up) and firm, 2-4 minutes, stir in vinegar and mustard.  Season again with salt & pepper to taste.  If skillet seems dry, add a splash of oil.  Divide spinach and eggs among 4 plates and top with hot shrimp mixture, some of the dressing from the skillet, and bacon pieces.  I also added some chopped parsley on top for looks.

Not bad for a salad entree.  Not bad at all.