Confession time — I’m not a fruit eater. Never have been. Not apples, not pears, not peaches, and especially not bananas. Gross. And don’t even get me started on fruits that are baked into things. Apple pie, peach cobbler, even blueberry muffins, bleccccch. Fruit is not dessert and it’s definitely not supposed to be hot.
Obviously, never eating fruit is not the healthiest and most ideal way to live. I do make efforts from time to time to eat some, but since it doesn’t come naturally to me, I was extra excited to find this recipe. Sneaking veggies into recipes is practically second nature to me, but it never occurred to me to sneak fruit. And this works especially well, because everything is chilled and you don’t have confront the possibility of warmish fruit. This also makes good leftovers to take to work — filling, healthy, and no need to heat it up!
JERK SHRIMP WITH CARRIBBEAN QUINOA (adapted from Iowa Girl Eats)
1 cup dry quinoa, rinsed and drained in a mesh strainer
1 and 1/2 lbs shrimp, peeled and deveined
3 tbsp Jerk seasoning blend (I used Penzeys, but you can also make your own using this recipe)
2 tbsp olive oil, divided
2 cups chopped fruit (I used strawberries, grapes, and pineapple – you could add blueberries, mandarin oranges, etc.)
2 green onions, chopped
2 tbsp chopped cilantro
juice of one lemon
salt and pepper
crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
1. Cook quinoa according to package directions. When done, chill in refrigerator while you prepare remaining ingredients.
2. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in large skillet over medium heat. Pat shrimp dry with paper towels then place in a large bowl. Coat shrimp with jerk seasoning blend. When oil is hot, cook shrimp in skillet until pink and cooked through, turning once (2-3 minutes per side). You can work in batches if need be.
3. When shrimp is cooked, add to bowl with quinoa. Toss shrimp and quinoa with remaining tablespoon olive oil, lemon juice, green onions, cilantro, salt and pepper, and crushed red pepper flakes (if using). Continue refrigerating until ready to serve. Immediately before serving, toss with chopped fruit.
This was actually a pretty fun dinner, and it made an even better take-to-work lunch. Healthy, packed with protein and fruit, and no microwave required!