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Shrimp Salad with Sherry Vinaigrette

Marcia Kiesel ekes out every bit of flavor from the shrimp here, both by serving them whole and by sauteing the shells in water to create the base for a briny dressing made with sherry vinegar and olive oil.

  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4

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  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/4 pounds medium shrimp—shelled and deveined, shrimp halved lengthwise, shells reserved
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 6 ounces watercress (10 cups packed), thick stems discarded


  1. In a medium saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the shrimp shells, season with salt and pepper and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until the shells start to brown, about 3 minutes. Add 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes.
  2. Strain the shrimp stock and return it to the saucepan. Boil over high heat until reduced to 2 tablespoons, about 10 minutes. Pour the reduction into a small bowl. Stir in the vinegar and 3 tablespoons of the olive oil and season the dressing with salt and pepper.
  3. In a large skillet, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the shrimp and season with salt and pepper. Cook over moderate heat, tossing, until just cooked, about 3 minutes.
  4. In a bowl, toss the watercress with the dressing. Add the shrimp and toss. Mound the salad on plates and serve.

Suggested Pairing

Zesty, New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc.

Contributed By Photo © Con Poulos Published September 2012

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