A lightly sweet salad complements spicy pan-seared scallops perfectly in this 25-minute meal.
1 large orange
1/4 cup olive oil, divided
2 tbsp champagne vinegar
1 tsp raw honey
1 bulb fennel, cored and thinly sliced
4 cups loosely packed baby arugula
3 tbsp potato flour
1 tsp ground cayenne pepper
1 lb sea scallops, muscle removed
1/8 tsp each sea salt and fresh ground black pepper
Using a sharp knife, slice off top and bottom of orange. Set orange on 1 sliced end and using downward strokes following the curve of the fruit, remove peel and pith and discard. Working over a large bowl to catch juices, gently cut between membranes and remove segments into bowl. Squeeze remaining membrane over bowl to release any juices. To bowl, add 2 tbsp oil, vinegar and honey, and stir. Add fennel then arugula over top. (NOTE: Wait until ready to serve before tossing.)
In a shallow dish, combine flour and cayenne. Dredge each scallop through flour mixture, flipping once, to coat. Discard remaining flour. In a large skillet on medium-high, heat 1 tbsp oil. Working in batches, cook scallops until well browned and firm, about 2 to 3 minutes per side, being careful not to overcook. Add remaining 1 tbsp oil between batches. Toss salad and season with salt and pepper. Divide salad among serving plates and top with scallops.
Wonderfully fresh and tender scallops are served on a bed of fennel and lettuce with a sweet and tart grapefruit dressing. If your budget allows, buy high-quality, dry-packed scallops, which are not packed in a phosphate preservative solution.
Sweet sautéed fennel and orange juice mellow the peppery taste of watercress in this company-worthy dish. For the best flavor, add the watercress and orange zest to the sauté at the very last minute. If the sauté is done cooking before the fish, simply take it off the heat and stir in the greens and zest when you’re ready to serve. Use clean tweezers to remove the pin bones from the fish, or ask your fishmonger to do it for you.
Even though these salmon fillets are cooked in the oven, because they’re wrapped in parchment with other moist ingredients such as kale and orange, they basically steam, which keeps them tender and juicy.