SHRIMP, FAVA BEAN AND ASPARAGUS SALAD
Spring is quickly approaching. It's time to shift from hearty, heavy winter meals - like soups, stews and casseroles - to fresh, lighter spring dishes. Take advantage of the season's harvest to serve up vegetables when they're at their tastiest.
Welcome spring with our Shrimp, Fava Bean and Asparagus Salad - a light spring fare flavored with two in-season vegetables.
Fava beans, one of the oldest plants to be harvested in spring, were a cooking staple in Greco-Roman times. Today, they're known for their distinct flavor and creamy texture, which make them a great addition to a wide variety of dishes. When shopping for fava beans, select pods that are firm and full along the entire length of the pod. Choose the pods with the smallest bumps - these are the youngest beans and will not need to go through a second peeling.
The second vegetable in this dish - asparagus - is a bit more common than the fava bean, but just as delicious. It's a nutrient-dense food and a good source of potassium, fiber, vitamin B6, vitamins A and C and thiamin. You'll want to select stalks that are firm, crisp and have heads that are full, tightly closed and evenly colored.
Think green! The phytochemicals found in green fruits and vegetables can help to lower cancer risk, improve eye health and keep bones and teeth strong. Start with this delicious salad and continue to add more and more of these vegetables when they're at their freshest to reap the healthful - and flavorful - benefits.
Shrimp, Fava Bean and Asparagus Salad
Cooking Time: 25 minutes
Yields: 6 Servings
- 2 pounds fresh fava beans, shelled (about 1 cup)
- 1 pound thin asparagus, trimmed and cut diagonally into 2-inch pieces
- 1 pound medium shrimp (about 30), shelled and deveined
- 4 cups of mixed green salad
- 1 tablespoon stone ground mustard
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh organic basil leaves
- 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon organic plain yogurt
In a small bowl, whisk together yogurt, mustard and basil. Add oil in a stream, whisking until emulsified, and season with salt and pepper.
Before you begin, set aside a large bowl of ice and cold water. In a large saucepan of boiling salted water, cook fava beans until crisp-tender, about 2-1/2 minutes, and transfer to ice water to stop cooking. Drain fava beans in a colander and gently peel away outer skins. Transfer fava beans to a large serving bowl.
Have a second large bowl of ice and cold water ready and set aside. Return water in pan to a boil and cook asparagus until crisp-tender, about 3-1/2 minutes. Transfer asparagus to ice water to stop cooking. Drain asparagus in colander and pat dry with paper towels.
Return water in pan to a boil and cook shrimp until just cooked through, about 2 minutes. Transfer shrimp with slotted spoon to paper towels to cool.
In bowl with fava beans, toss together 1/3 cup dressing, asparagus, shrimp, mixed greens and salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle salad with some of the remaining dressing.
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