Breakaway Cook

Edaminty Shrimp Salad

Most people enjoy edamame on their own; they’re fun to shuck from their pods and pop into your mouth (and one of Daphne’s favorite activities), especially on a hot day, liberally salted, with plenty of cold beer to wash them down. But edamame also make fabulous purees, and nothing could be simpler if you purchase frozen, already-shucked edamame; just toss them into boiling water for five minutes or so, drain, and they’re ready for pureeing.

This is a dish I used to make often in Japan. Just toss a cup or so of cooked edamame into a food processor with big handfuls of mint leaves, olive oil, salt, pepper, and a little lemon. You can use other herbs as well; Thai basil makes and especially fine edamame puree. Sometimes I toss some fruit in as well (stonefruit works well if it’s the right season, but grapes are good, too) just to liven things up a bit, and I even add plain yogurt to it sometimes, if I want the puree to be a little thinner. You then transfer the green goo to a bowl, add some more (whole) cooked edamame for visual and textural appeal, and you’re ready to go. This can also be a fabulous and nearly instant pasta sauce: just combine with hot pasta.

But it’s wonderful as a kind of hearty dip, and has special affinity with shrimp. It’s an appeztizer/pre-dinner snack that always disappears quickly at parties.