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Shrimp & Crab Salad – Lemon Caper Vinaigrette

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Shrimp & Crab Salad – Lemon Caper Vinaigrette

Chino Wayne | Jun 6, 2006 12:06 AM

I put this together for a salad bar pot-luck this past weekend, tastes great, and is healthy to boot. The quantity I made filled two large serving bowls and fed about 24 people, as a side dish, with enough left over for me to enjoy a midnight snack that night.

2-1/4 pounds cooked, peeled, bay shrimp
2 pounds cooked, peeled, medium shrimp
3 pounds (approximately) Alaskan king crab legs (this was four large legs), cooked
2 heads red leaf lettuce
6 lemons
3 cucumbers
1 bunch celery stalks
2 bermuda onions
3 Anaheim peppers
3 cans colossal, pitted black olives
2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 jar Nonpareille capers
salt
pepper
Tabasco habanero sauce

Rinse the shrimp in cool water, then drip dry in a colander, and then blot dry with paper towels. Remove the crab legs from their shells; a pair of poultry shears makes this job really easy. Blot dries the crab with paper towels; slice the crab legs in to bite sized pieces.

Rinse and blot dry the celery stalks with paper towels, then dice. Peel the cucumbers, slice in half length-wise and remove the seeds. Then blot dry with paper towels; slice the cucumber lengths in to bite sized pieces. Peel the onions and cube. Slice the peppers in half length-wise, remove the seeds and membranes under cool running water; blot dry with paper towels. Slice the peppers in to bite sized pieces. Slice the olives in half, length-wish, blot dry with paper towels.

Combine the celery, cucumber, onions, peppers, olives, bay shrimp and the crab (reserve the medium shrimp) in a large mixing bowl. Use your hands to combine the ingredients so as to mix them well and not damage them.

Prepare the vinaigrette in a small mixing bowl by adding the oil, and the juice of the six lemons. Put the capers in a colander and rinse in cold water, drain, then blot dry with paper towels. Put 1/3 of the whole capes in a mortar and with the pestle crush the capers. Add the crushed capers to the bowl of oil and lemon. Add 6 drops of Tabasco and salt and freshly ground (fine grind) pepper to taste (approximately 1 teaspoon each), whisk all ingredients in the mixing bowl until the dressing is emulsified. Taste the dressing and adjust the seasonings as appropriate. When the dressing is ready whisk the rest of the whole capers in.

Pour the dressing on the salad and toss. Cover and refrigerate the salad for one hour to allow the flavors to develop and meld. When serving I lined the bowls with the lettuce leaves and then garnished the sides of the bowls with lemon wedges and distributed all of the medium shrimp along the edges.

Serve as soon as possible after chilling. Despite all the blotting with paper towels, a lot of water will leach out of the vegetables and the crab, the longer the salad stands the more it will become diluted by the water.

The next time I make this salad I will probably add more lemon juice to counter-act the dilution by the water, also if this was just for my own consumption and not a bunch of non-hounds, I would add more Tabasco and probably chopped cilantro. The result is sort of a Mexican cockatiel.

Link: http://www.indefatigable-indolence.or...

Image: http://www.indefatigable-indolence.or...

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