Southwest Shrimp Dinner, Sweet Potato Avocado Salad

If you're looking for a tasty dinner to serve during Lent, Leader food columnist Kathleen Brotherton recommends making this Southwest Shrimp Dinner and Sweet Potato Avocado Salad.

After what seems like a long winter this year, we can expect to soon see springtime weather. With the change in seasons, we also can expect to see a change in what we eat.

And, with Lenten season fast approaching, fish and seafood dishes will become a popular choice for lunch and dinner.

If you’re looking for a change from the typical fried fish dinner, you might want to try this Southwest Shrimp Dinner with a Sweet Potato-Avocado Salad on the side.

The blend of flavors is delicious. An added advantage is both dishes are easy and quick to prepare!


2 tablespoons butter or margarine

1 medium green bell pepper, coarsely chopped

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup chopped celery

1 (14 ½-ounce) can of diced tomatoes

1/3 cup dry white wine (optional)

1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce

1/2 teaspoon seasoned pepper

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder with parsley

1 pound cooked, medium shrimp; tails removed

1/2 cup sliced ripe olives, drained


In a large skillet, melt margarine or butter and saute bell pepper, onion and celery. Add remaining ingredients, except shrimp and olives; blend well. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, uncovered 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add shrimp and olives; cook 10 minutes or until shrimp turn pink.

Serve over hot, fluffy rice. Makes 4-6 servings.

Note: If using instant rice, boil 2 cups water and then add 2 cups instant rice and salt to taste and cook until soft and fluffy, stirring frequently.


1 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes, scrubbed (about 2 large or 3 medium potatoes)

1 medium-size avocado

2 green onions, (tops only) trimmed and thinly sliced

1/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper


3 tablespoons cider vinegar

2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1/2 cup vegetable oil

Microwave clean sweet potatoes (after making a cut lengthwise in potatoes), cooking until tender, about 6-7 minutes (depending on wattage of your microwave). Let cool till easy to handle. Peel potatoes and cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks. Place in medium-size salad bowl.

Peel avocado and cut into slices and add to sweet potatoes, tossing lightly.

Combine vinegar, pickle relish, mustard, salt and pepper in container with tight-fitting lid. Shake well. Add oil and shake well again and then pour over potatoes and avocados. Toss potatoes and avocados with dressing.

Add green onions and red pepper and gently stir together. Serve at room temperature or chilled. Makes 4 servings.

Brotherton offers website readers one stellar recipe a week in the “My Leader Yummy” feature.

Looking for a recipe you can’t find? Email me at and I’ll see if I have it.