Shrimp and Melon Salad


(In Italian: Insalata di Scampi e Melone-sounds even better, doesn’t it?)

Serves: 2 for dinner, 4 as a side salad (photo shows serving for 2)


For the Lemony Dressing:

2 Tbsp Flying Olive Sicilian Lemon Balsamic Vinegar or 1 Tbsp Balsamic and 1 Tbsp lemon juice if you prefer more tartness. You can also use Flying Olive Black Mission Fig Balsamic Vinegar but it will make the dressing darker

2 tbsp Flying Olive Lemon Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

For the Shrimp:

¼ tsp sea salt

Pinch of cayenne pepper, if desired

6-12 large shrimp, peeled and deveined, but use what you have or what your budget will allow

1 Tbsp Flying Olive Lemon Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped

¼ cup dry white wine such s Pinot Grigio.

For the Salad:

½ a ripe melon such as cantaloupe, halved and seeded

3 ounces of arugula (about 3 large handfuls)

6 dark figs such as Black Mission figs, cut in half lengthwise and cut into thin slices. If figs are not available use 3-6 pitted dates cut in the same way.


To Make the Dressing:

Pour the Flying Olive Balsamic of Choice into a small bowl or a jar with a lid. Gradually whisk in the Flying Olive Lemon EVOO. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

To Cook the Shrimp:

Mix the salt and cayenne pepper, if using. Season the shrimp with the mixture. Heat the Flying Olive EVOO in a large skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the garlic and stir often until the garlic has turned light brown, about 1 minute.   Add the shrimp to the skillet and cook, turning occasionally, just until the shrimp begin to turn pink, about 2 minutes. Add the wine and cook until the shrimp is opaque and the wine is almost evaporated, about 2 minutes more. Transfer the shrimp to a plate and let cool.

Using a melon baller, scoop out balls from the melon. If you don’t have a melon baller, cut the melon into cubes. Place in a medium-sized bowl. Toss the arugula into a medium bowl. Add the melon and toss.

To Serve:

Arrange one-half, or one-quarter if for 4, of the sliced figs or dates in a wide circle on a dinner plate. Fill in the empty center of the fig/date circle with one-half or one-quarter of the arugula/melon mixture. Top with 3-6 of the shrimp (depending on size). Drizzle on the dressing over each salad and serve.

Inspired by a recipe in the beautiful cookbook by Gabriele Corcos and Debi Mazar, Super Tuscan: Heritage Recipes and Simple Pleasures from our Kitchen to your Table. Touchstone, New York, 2017.

Submitted by Barb L.