Grilled Pesto Shrimp and Summer Veggie Salad

by Mindy on September 2, 2010

This was one of my favorite dinners of the summer!  So healthy and a 10/10 on the delicious scale.  All those fresh garden veggies on the grill were heaven in combination with two of my favorite things… shrimp and pesto.  Just thinking about it makes me want to fire up the grill and make it for lunch right now.  What is better, this is super fast if you have your pesto prepared ahead.  I grow my own basil every year and make a big batch of pesto at the end of every summer now.  Unfortunately, the pesto in my freezer never seems to make it to summer.  So I had to make a small, fresh batch for this dinner.  Even so, it was still a pretty quick dinner.  To boot, my husband who is NOT a veggie/salad fan ate almost his whole plate full (granted he ate twice as many shrimp on his salad as I have pictured).  :)  Now that has got to be amazing, right?!

Grilled Pesto Shrimp and Veggie Salad
Submitted by Mindy ~ The Sisters Cafe

1 yellow (or red) and 1 orange bell pepper, seeded and cut into large pieces
1 red onion, chopped into large segments
1 yellow summer squash, sliced
1 zucchini, sliced
Olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Either use previously prepared pesto (which I usually do) or make a small batch of fresh pesto*
1 lb. uncooked shrimp, peeled and deveined
Spinach
Tomato wedges
Crumbled feta cheese

*Small batch of fresh pesto:
2 tbsp. pine nuts
2 tbsp. walnuts
2 cloves garlic, unpeeled
1 cup packed fresh basil leaves
3 1/2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
2 tbsp. freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:
Heat grill to medium-high heat.  Oil the grates to prevent food from sticking.

To prepare the veggies for grilling, combine the bell peppers, red onion, squash and zucchini in a large bowl and toss.  Drizzle lightly with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and toss to coat evenly.  Set aside.

To make the pesto, combine the pine nuts, walnuts, garlic in the bowl of a food processor.  Process 30 seconds.  Add basil leaves, olive oil, salt, and pepper and process until smooth.  Add parmesan cheese and process 1 minute.    Set aside.

Thread the shrimp onto skewers for the grill.  Once the skewers are assembled, use the back of a spoon or a pastry brush to smother the pesto onto both sides of the shrimp.  Set aside.

Transfer the veggies to a grill basket and cook on the grill until they are crisp-tender, about 10-15 minutes (depending on the heat of your grill).  Remove the grill basket from the heat and place the shrimp skewers on the grill in a single layer.  Assemble the salads while the shrimp cook by tossing the grilled veggies on top of a bed of spinach.

Allow the shrimp to cook just until cooked through, about 3-5 minutes (depending on the heat of your grill), turning once during cooking.  Remove the shrimp from the skewers and place them on top of the salads.  Top with fresh tomato wedges and crumbled feta cheese.  Serve immediately.

Adapted from Annie’s Eats

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Woodbury Family September 2, 2010 at 2:20 pm

Looks delicious! Do you just toss the salad with the pesto like dressing?

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2 Melanie Anne September 2, 2010 at 4:12 pm

oh YUM!! Every since you told me about this dinner last week –I have been waiting for you to post it so I can make it! This sounds wonderful! Thanks Mindy!!

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3 Mindy September 2, 2010 at 8:17 pm

Hi Woodbury Family,

You actually don't need to toss it at all. The veggies actually could stand on their own as a side dish, but they are better layered with the shrimp, spinach, and feta. So just layer all the ingredients like I said, and there will be plenty of flavor without a salad dressing. You're going to love it!

Mindy

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4 Heather September 2, 2010 at 11:57 pm

This recipe looks delicious. My husband was recently diagnosed with Type I diabetes, and this looks like a great "carbohydrate free" dinner. We will definitely have to try it! :)

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