This recipe from champion pit masters Andy Husbands and Chris Hart and authors of Grill to Perfection: Two Champion Pit Masters’ Recipes and Techniques for Unforgettable Backyard Grilling is the perfect summer meal—light and refreshing yet with the smoky deliciousness of the grill.
The authors write, “Grilling lettuce is a fantastic way to add those great char flavors to a salad. The key is to sear the leaves without wilting them too much. Leave this for the last moment, and they will still be tender and crisp—and charred. A perfectly grilled shrimp should have a slight snap to it and be sweet and juicy. Pay attention to the sides of the shrimp to see when they change from translucent to white. They will continue to cook a bit even after they’re off the grill, so just before they are totally white, pull them off, let stand for a few seconds, then serve.”
Recipe courtesy of GRILL TO PERFECTION: Two Champion Pit Masters’ Recipes and Techniques for Unforgettable Backyard Grilling, by Andy Husbands and Chris Hart, with Andrea Pyenson, April 2014 / Page Street Publishing
Makes 4 to 6 servings
Juice of 2 lemons
⅓ cup/80ml olive oil
1 shallot, minced
¼ cup/20g chopped fresh parsley leaves
4 leaves fresh basil, roughly chopped
1 tsp red pepper flakes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Olive oil, for grilling
8 to 12 shrimp (U-12), peeled and deveined
1 head romaine, outer leaves removed, quartered through the core (no need to cut off the end)
1 small head radicchio, loose leaves removed, quartered through the core (no need to cut off the end)
1 wedge (about 4 oz/113g) Parmesan or your favorite hard cheese, for garnish
Build a hot direct fire. Spread an even layer of unlit charcoal in the bottom of the grill. Fill a chimney with charcoal. Stuff two sheets of newspaper in the bottom of the chimney and light it. When the coals are fully engaged—you should see flames peeking over the top—pour them over the unlit charcoal. If using a gas grill, light the gas and adjust the temperature on both sides to high.
Make the vinaigrette: In a large bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, shallot, parsley, basil and red pepper flakes. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
When you can hold your hands over the fire for no more than 3 to 5 seconds, clean the grill grate. Lightly oil the shrimp and season with salt and pepper. Grill for 1 minute, rotate 90 degrees and then flip. Continue to cook for 1 to 2 minutes more until the outer skin is pinkish red with a slight char on it and the split side has just turned from translucent to white. Remove the shrimp from the grill, place in the vinaigrette bowl and toss.
Make the salad: Lightly oil the romaine and radicchio and season with salt and pepper. Place the romaine quarters on the grill and cook for 1 minute per side (there are 3 sides), until it is slightly charred and lightly warmed. Transfer to a cutting board and roughly chop the leaves; discard the cores. Scatter the leaves over the serving plate. Repeat with the radicchio, and scatter the leaves over the romaine. Spoon the shrimp in the vinaigrette evenly over the lettuces. Using a vegetable peeler, shave some Parmesan over the salad. Serve immediately.
Want to know more about Grill to Perfection? Read our review here.