Grilled Watermelon and Shrimp Salad over Arugula is a playful, yet sophisticated entrée that is bursting with summer flavors.
I love watermelon salad, it’s one of my favorite summer dishes. You may have already tried watermelon salad made with cucumbers, feta, and mint (yum!), well I also make a version with blue cheese and basil. My mom calls it my “Italian” version. I really love the combination of the sweet watermelon, the savory blue cheese, and the tangy balsamic. I knew I wanted to include those flavors in this recipe too.
Because I wanted this salad to be a dinner entrée, I needed some protein and some greens; the shrimp and arugula work really well in this dish. I love how the sweet, salty, tangy, bitter, and smoky flavors all mingle together and make a little party. Add a glass of crisp white wine, and you’ll feel like you’re on vacation!
I used a small, almost round watermelon, which was about 5lbs. I only needed two slices of watermelon, for this salad, so I left the rest un-gilled for my kids (and me) to snack on later.
There is already a lot going on in this salad, so I kept the shrimp simple by just seasoning them with salt and pepper, and brushing them with olive oil.
Here is a shot of my grilled shrimp:
This was actually two pounds of shrimp, because I wanted leftovers for lunch during the week. Guess what… my husband and two sons ate ALL of the shrimp! Those little pigs! I suggest 1 pound of shrimp for this recipe because I like that ratio of shrimp to other salad stuff, but if you want some leftovers, or if you suspect that there are some shrimp-hogs in your house, go ahead and grill two pounds.
Here is a great video on how to skewer shrimp for grilling:
I like this Balsamic Vinegar of Modena from Trader Joes for the vinaigrette. A good rule of thumb is to avoid vinegar with added sugar and caramel coloring; a decent balsamic does not need the additives.
A little trick for getting perfect crosshatch marks on your watermelon slices, is to think of your grill as a clock face. If the grates run from 12:00 to 6:00, then lay your slices to run from 10:00 to 4:00, and when you are about halfway through grilling one side, turn the slices to run from 2:00 to 8:00.
I love adding a whole, unprocessed and healthy twist to classic recipes. My food is often grain-free, usually gluten-free, and always unprocessed.