I’ve a confession to make. I hope you won’t think any less of me… but for the first time ever, I gave up on a challenge that I’d set up for myself: I decided to quit doing the Whole30 before I was even half way through.
It’s not that I couldn’t handle it and was craving “forbidden” foods real bad, far from there. Nope. That was not a problem at all, for you see, willpower is my middle name.
Only I recently made a couple of decisions that went completely against the rules of the program. For starters, I decided to boost my protein intake and change the way I get it into my body around my workouts. In other words, yeah… I kinda reintroduced whey protein powder to my regular diet.
That also translates into me doing smoothies again. My, it feels like it had been ages. Some of you who have been following me for a while might see that as very good news! I used to come up with all kinds of original smoothie creations just like I do with nut butters these days. Although I now tend to think of a smoothie in terms of an efficient way to quickly deliver protein and carbs to my body pre and post workout, so I’m not quite so fancy about them anymore. Mind you, I did come up with one using sweet potatoes that wasn’t bad at all… I might have to share that.
On top of that, I was getting all kinds of culinary inspirations that called for honey or maple syrup and I didn’t want to put off making those dishes on the simple account that I would end up consuming a teaspoon or two of sugar. And since what I was after was their distinctive flavor profile, I couldn’t really leave them out or even find them a good substitute.
Seeing as how none of that is Whole30 compliant, I can’t pretend like I’m taking the challenge when in fact I’m not. Still, I decided to continue to eat super “clean”, so no treats, no nut butter by the spoonful, no baked goods, no desserts or anything of the kind. Strict paleo is still the name of the game for me. Well, paleo that includes some dairy, that is. I wonder if they will eventually come up with appellations for the different shades of paleo the way they have for vegetarians, depending on what they choose to include or exclude form their diet.
Bah! They say you need to do what works for you, right? Well, I think this is where I’m at now: Stop doing things strictly by the book and find a solution that works great for me and gives me the results that I’m after.
But enough babbling for now, we have some cooking to do. Thank goodness, today’s recipe comes together in no time!
And pssst… it’s Whole30 compliant, too!
Since we’re making a cold Shrimp Avocado and Grapefruit Salad, we’ll start by cooking the shrimp so it has time to cool.
To do that, place the shrimp in a steam basket set over boiling water, cover and cook for about 4 to 5 minutes, until the crustaceans turn pink and completely opaque.
Then, quickly transfer them to a bowl and also throw one or two dozen ice cubes in there. Stir things around a bit so the ice starts to melt and set aside, stirring every now and then until the shrimp is completely cooled.
Oh, and if you happen to have stainless steel bowls, by all means take one out! These are ideal to use as they conduct heat and cold really efficiently; As such, the bowl will get colder faster, which will in turn help in cooling your shrimp more rapidly.
And if you were in a real pinch, perhaps because I talked so much in the beginning, you know, you could also used precooked shrimp. They would very well do the trick.
While your shrimp is cooling, work on supreming the grapefruit.
If you’ve never done that, don’t panic; It’s super easy. Start by removing the top and bottom of the fruit with a sharp knife. Then, carefully remove the skin and pith from the flesh with a sharp knife. Begin at the top and follow the curves all the way down.
Next, working over a bowl to collect the juice, carefully remove each section of the fruit by inserting the blade of the knife between the flesh and membrane on both sides.
The wedges should come out easily, leaving only the membrane intact.
Squeeze the membrane to get all the juice out. As you can see, there’s quite a lot! Sadly, we’re not gonna use it today, but make sure you save this beautiful juice for another use, or just plain drink it out of the bowl.
Not only is this stuff a nutritional powerhouse, it’s also deliciously refreshing.
Fish your grapefruit supremes out of the juice and then cut them into bite size chunks; place the pieces of fruit in a large mixing bowl.
Drain the now chilled shrimp (or precooked, if using that) really well and add it to the bowl with the grapefruit, followed with the rest of the ingredients.
Toss delicately until well combined and serve immediately.
Note that this salad will keep for up to a full day in the refrigerator, so you could make it in advance if you wanted to. However, the avocado may turn a little brown on you after a couple of hours, so if you choose to make the salad ahead of time, make sure you add the avocado at the very last minute.
- 340g wild-caught pink shrimp, size 30-40 (thaw completely if using frozen)
- 1 avocado, diced
- 1 pink grapefruit
- 2 small jalapeno peppers, seeded and finely chopped
- ¼ cup chopped raw shelled pistachios
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp finely chopped red onion
- 2 tbsp minced fresh ginger
- 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tbsp white balsamic vinegar
- ¼ tsp Himalayan salt
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- The grated zest of 1 lemon
- The grated zest of orange
- Place the shrimp in a steam basket set over boiling water, cover and cook for about 4 to 5 minutes, until the crustaceans turn pink and completely opaque.
- Immediately transfer them to a bowl and throw in one or two dozen ice cubes. Stir things around a bit so the ice starts melting and set aside, stirring every now and then until the shrimp is completely cooled.
- Meanwhile, supreme your grapefruit and then cut it into bite size chunks; place the pieces of fruit in a large mixing bowl and save the juice for another use.
- Once completely chilled, drain the shrimp really well and add it to the bowl with the grapefruit, followed with the rest of the ingredients.
- Toss delicately until well combined and serve immediately.
- This salad will keep for up to a full day in the refrigerator, so you could make it in advance if you wanted to. However, the avocado may have a tendency to brown a little bit, so make sure you add it at the very last minute.