PhotoRecipe: Grilled Shrimp PTL

Dear Friends and Eaters,

this is another recipe from the Lunchbox Demo last Monday.  I first tried a BLT when I arrived in NY, we don’t have those in Italy. I loved the idea but I also wanted to make the traditionally decadent recipe a little lighter and healthier.  Pesto is considered a mere pasta condiment in the US but I have used it as a marinade for a long time and I thing it infuses a great basil flavor to many dishes that would otherwise be a little bland. So I created a PTL as in Pesto Lettuce and Tomato.  You can substitute shrimp with chicken and even steak, pesto compliments every protein, believe me!

  • ½ lb peeled deveined frozen shrimp (uncooked), thawed
  • 1 heirloom tomato, sliced
  • 4 leaves of lettuce
  • 1 cup of greek fat free yogurt
  • ½ cup of store bought pesto + 1 tbsp
  • 2 tbsp of canola oil
  • 8 slices of whole wheat bread
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt


Step 1:  In a ziplock bag, mix 1 tbsp of pesto with 1 cup of water.  Remove the tails from the shrimp and place them in the ziplock bag to marinade for at least 15 minutes.

Step 2:  Combine the remaining pesto with the greek yogurt and refrigerate until ready to use.

Step 3:  Brush a grill pan with 2 tbsp of the canola oil and preheat.  Drain the shrimp from the marinade, and grill them on both sides (approximately 2 minutes per side).

Step 4:  Assemble the sandwich by spreading the yogurt pesto mixture on all the slices of bread.  Place the slices of tomato and lettuce leaves on 4 of the bread slices, season with salt.  Cover with the additional slice of bread.