Arugula Salad with White Beans
and Shrimp with Basil Vinaigrette

arugula salad

My good friend and teacher, the jolly Bob Kinkead, is the chef/owner of an outstanding restaurant in Washington, D.C., called Kinkead's. His specialty is seafood, and of the many recipes that I've borrowed from him over the years, this is one of the few I'm going to acknowledge. If you have the grilling fire lit for some other purpose, you can grill the shrimp, following the instructions below, instead of poaching it. This basil vinaigrette is really good in potato salad or just drizzled over straight-from-the-garden tomatoes.

Serves 4 to 6

Best substitute greens: Romaine lettuce or any of these greens: Watercress, Dadelion greens, Mizuna, Baby kale, Baby collards, Belgian endive.

For the dressing
3/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (about 1/2 large lemon)
2 tablespoons grainy mustard
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh basil (or substitute parsley, thyme, or oregano)
1 teaspoon sugar
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste

For the salad

1 cup (about 6 ounces) cannellini or navy beans, soaked overnight in cold water to cover (or substitute a 15-ounce can of beans)
1/2 pound medium shrimp (8 to 10 shrimp), peeled and deveined
1 bunch arugula, trimmed, washed, and dried
1 red bell pepper, seeded, halved, and diced small
1/4 cup pitted and roughly chopped Kalamata or other briny black olives
1 small red onion, peeled and diced small
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste

1. In a small bowl, combine all the dressing ingredients and whisk to combine well. Set aside.

2. Drain the dried beans and place them in a small saucepan with enough cold salted water to cover by about 3 inches. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low and simmer until the beans are tender but not mushy, 1-1/2 to 2 hours. Drain, rinse with cold water, and allow to cool to room temperature. (If using canned beans, drain and rinse well.)

3. Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan, bring 3 cups of salted water to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low, add the shrimp, and simmer until just tender, about 3 minutes. Check for doneness by cutting one of the shrimp open; it should be opaque throughout. Drain the shrimp, plunge them into ice water to stop the cooking, then drain again.

3a. To grill shrimp: Prepare shrimp for the grill by rubbing with vegetable oil and threading onto skewers. Grill over a medium-hot fire until the shrimp are opaque throughout. Allow to cool to room temperature.

4. In a large bowl, combine the shrimp and beans with the arugula, bell pepper, olives, onion, and salt and pepper. Stir the dressing well, add just enough to moisten the ingredients (there will be some dressing left over), toss well, and serve.


Recipe from:
Lettuce in Your Kitchen
by Chris Schlesinger and John Willoughy
William Morrow & Company, Inc.
1998, Softcover, US $10.00
Recipes & photos reprinted by permission


Lettuce in Your Kitchen



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