Bring a pot of water to a boil. Make sure you add enough water to cook the shrimp and the sweet leaf.
Prepare the sweet leaf by rinsing and hand-breaking each shoot tip into bite-size pieces, starting from the very top. Once you get to the point where the shoot is hard to break, stop there and discard the rest of the shoot (if it's hard to break it'll be too chewy and unpleasant in the salad). Set aside.
Coarsely pound the garlic and chilies in a mortar. Add lime juice, fish sauce and sugar and pound until well mixed, making sure the sugar is fully dissolved. Taste-test the dressing and adjust as needed.
Once the water is boiling cook the sweet leaf in the water for about 1 minute and transfer to a large mixing bowl with a slotted spoon. Do the same with the shrimp but take 2-3 minutes this time.
Add the sliced shallots to the mixing bowl. Pour the salad dressing over and toss.
Split the salad into 2 dishes and serve.
This salad is perfect as a meal but you can also enjoy it with steamed rice.