Honey Walnut and Shrimp Salad Bites

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.

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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.

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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)

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

  1. Prepare SeaPak according to instructions on box.  Drain.  Reserve shrimp.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.