30 June 2013

Dilled Shrimp and Tomato Toasts with Cucumber

Shrimp and Tomato Toasts 3

July is around the corner, and the weather sure is heating up here in Korea!  Most days, between the soaring temperatures and the exhaustion after a long day of work, I don't feeling like cooking at all.  Instead, I just putter around in the kitchen and see what I can create with whatever is on hand, pulling together easy nibbles when hunger hits.

I've been craving dishes that are cool and refreshing, yet healthy and nutritious.  Like this chilled salad of satisfying shrimp and juicy tomato in a creamy dill vinaigrette, served over crisp-toasted rye bread from my favorite local bakery.  My parents, who just wrapped up two weeks visiting me here in Korea, were as delighted as I have been with OPS Bakery here in the Haeundae district of Busan.  OPS sells some of the most authentic German bread I've tasted anywhere outside of Germany, and my father, the son of a Bavarian baker, would concur!

The special days with my parents flew by all too quickly.  We explored volcanic formations on Jeju Island, drank a little too much makkeolli and ate a little too much after long days of site-seeing in Seoul, and spent time resting either flopped on the floor of a jjimjilbang or over a simple bread and cheese dinner at home.

With this lovely little lunch, all I needed was a simple accompaniment of cool cucumber slices sprinkled with sea salt and freshly-cracked pepper, just like my father so often prepares for lunches at home.  I'm thankful for the happy memories we created while they visited, and I'm grateful for these tasty bites that helps to keep a little bit of them beside me even though they've returned back home to California.

Shrimp and Tomato Toasts 1

I didn't keep track of the exact measurements of my ingredients, but here is my best estimate of the recipe for you!

Chilled Shrimp and Tomato Salad
1 cup cooked shrimp, coarsely chopped
1 cup cherry tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup cucumber, finely chopped
1-2 Tbs. creamy vinaigrette
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp. dried dill
Salt and pepper, to taste

Mix all ingredients until evenly coated with dressing.  Chill well, then serve immediately over toasts or mounded over a bed of salad greens.

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