For Christmas, my daughter surprised Peter with a gift of two packs of snap-frozen Tasmanian sea scallops, with creamy coloured flesh and beautiful orange coral still attached.
What a delicious present for a pair of food enthusiasts who happen to adore seafood. I've used them in scallop pies, scallop risotto and, more recently, in my adaptation of this gorgeous salad created by chef Gordon Ramsay. It's a doddle to make, tastes great, and is a keeper.
SEA SCALLOPS WITH A SALAD OF BABY OAK LEAF, SNOW PEA TENDRILS AND APPLE
a little olive oil, for frying
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
juice of a small lemon
For the salad:
1 large, crisp apple, peeled and julienned
a little lemon juice, to stop the apple from turning brown
3 handfuls of baby oak leaves, washed and gently patted dry
1 cup of snow pea tendrils, washed, trimmed
To dress the salad:
juice and zest of 1/2 a lemon, to dress
extra virgin olive oil, to dress
sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
Prepare the salad by combining the prepared ingredients in an attractive serving dish. Toss gently. Dress the salad when you are ready to serve, just before you add the scallops.
Place the scallops into a colander and rinse them under a delicate stream of cold running water. Gently pat them dry with paper towelling. Sprinkle them with sea salt and freshly ground pepper.
Heat a little olive oil in a fry pan over medium-high heat. Arrange the scallops around the fry pan. Cook them briefly, for just a minute or so, until the scallops are nicely browned. Then, working quickly, turn them over, and cook for another minute or two, until they are firm and opaque and cooked through.
Arrange them over the dressed salad, and serve immediately. Serves 2 as a main meal. Preparation and cooking time: less than 20 minutes.
*Some folks suggest that you remove and discard the coral or roe. But when you are working with Tasmanian sea scallops with sweet orange coral, there really is no need to throw it out. It can be cooked at the very last moment and added to the salad.
Tell me dear readers, do you enjoy scallops? Do you leave the coral (roe) on, or do you remove it?
Hello. I'm Liz, a writer, cook and traveller based in Canberra, Australia.
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NB: I use Australian standard measuring cups and spoons in my recipes.