Grilled Shrimp Panzanella

There is something about cooking everything, and I do mean everything, on the grill that makes things taste just so much better.  And as these last days of summer fade into autumn, I’m kicking ye olde grille into overtime, baby.  This recipe is a case in point…technically it is a salad, but two of the major ingredients are cooked on the grill.  (In about 5 minutes, which makes it even more enticing in my book.)

Panzanella is traditionally a salad that substitutes bread for the lettuce (how great is that??), usually tossed with some tomatoes, olive oil and a little vinegar, which in and of itself is pretty wonderful.  This particular recipe adds some shrimp and basil and substitutes lemon juice for the vinegar, but here’s the beauty part…the shrimp and the bread are cooked on the grill first.  That gives the whole thing that charred grill taste that makes everything feel like the best part of summer.

So while we still have these lazy, hazy days of summer, surrounded by tomatoes and basil, grab yourself some bread and shrimp and crank up that grill.  Salad never tasted so dang good.

Grilled Shrimp Panzanella

Grilled Shrimp Panzanella

Ingredients

1 1/2 pounds peeled and deveined large shrimp
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest, plus 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 tablespoons olive oil
kosher salt and black pepper
1 small baguette (about 8 ounces), split lengthwise
2 1/2 pounds heirloom or beefsteak tomatoes, cut into wedges
2 cups fresh basil leaves

Directions

1. Heat grill to medium-high. In a large bowl, toss the shrimp with the lemon zest, 1 tablespoon of the oil, and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Brush the baguette with 1 tablespoon of the remaining oil.
2. Grill the baguette and shrimp, uncovered, until the baguette is golden and crisp, about 1 minute per side, and the shrimp are opaque throughout, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Cut the baguette into bite-size pieces.
3. In a second large bowl, toss the shrimp, baguette, tomatoes, and basil with the lemon juice, the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Serve either hot or at room temperature.

Comments

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  1. Mmm. I must make this for my shrimp-loving girl before frost hits and the tomatoes stop. (Though with this heatwave we're having in the NW, it doesn't seem like frost will ever come!)

  2. Anything with that smoky flavor definitely makes me think of summer and puts an instant smile on my face! Case in point.

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