I travel a lot, as you may already know, and when I do? I find inspirations for recipes in so many places. Bakeries, food trucks, Mom & Pops, and of course, fine restaurants. So, when SeaPak asked me to develop a new recipe for their Shrimptacular celebration of all things shrimp this month, I already had an idea.
A great idea.
While I was in Las Vegas earlier this year, the chef of one of my favorite haunts was experimenting with a new shrimp appetizer. I wasn’t sure about it, after hearing the components…but I had to give it a go. It was simple, too simple I feared, and the ingredients were somewhat strange pairings.
I was nervous. I didn’t want to be disappointed, not by one of my happy places.
I was not disappointed.
I was served a syrupy walnut crusted shrimp, served plainly over a few sprigs of mixed greens. How simple, and yet – so amazingly full of flavor. I knew I could adapt this later on into a meal, a side dish, or an appetizer. It was too easy.
Thank goodness for SeaPak, wanting to know what I could do.
I used their incredible frozen Shrimp Scampi, and cooked it according to the package instructions. If you’ve not tried SeaPak yet, I seriously recommend that you do. It’s always a crowd pleaser, and for those of us nowhere near the sea, it’s a fabulous way to get the fresh beachy flavors in a safe and convenient (and inexpensive!) way. There’s not been a single product of theirs that I have tried and not been impressed by the quality.
But back to this dish.
Once the scampi was prepared, I drained the shrimp and set those aside. While they had been cooking, I whipped up a little maple syrup and honey to make a glaze for chopped walnuts. If you aren’t a fan of honey, or, you’re supremely lazy (oh, goodness, I get it, I do) you can buy the walnuts in syrup at the grocery store in the ice cream section. I just prefer this simple solution and it’s very cost effective. Next up? Sriracha. It gives a subtle kick, but if you aren’t a fan…well, I guess you could omit it, but can we still be friends? Sriracha is some good stuff, folks.
I also chopped a bit of cilantro (I think the fresh pop of cilantro makes everything sing, and it really complements this dish), and added it to some peppery arugula.
Then I plated.
I served mine as an elegant appetizer, a giant two bite portion in a decorative spoon. It looked as delicious as it tasted, and garnered rave reviews. However, maybe you just want to eat a bowl of it? Go ahead. It looks great as a small salad, and certainly tastes great that way, too.
I hope you’ll enjoy it!
Honey Walnut and Shrimp Salad Bites
makes 10-12 servings (or 4-6 full sized salads)
- One package SeaPak Shrimp Scampi, prepared and drained
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup
- Dash Sriracha
- 1/2 cup crushed walnuts
- 3 cups fresh arugula
- 2 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro
- Prepare SeaPak according to instructions on box. Drain. Reserve shrimp.
- In a separate bowl, combine honey and syrup. Add sriracha to taste, a little at a time. Stir in walnuts, being sure to coast completely.
- Plate reserved shrimp and coated walnuts over arugula and chopped cilantro, as desired. Serve immediately.
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Disclaimer: I am an ambassador for SeaPak. Recipe, all thoughts, and opinions are my own.