Recipe by Jess March
I found this recipe from the website of the Hell's Kitchen TV show and made only one or two small changes. It's as fancy as anything they serve on the show and my boyfriend said it was the best thing I'd ever cooked for him! Of course fresh scallops are not cheap but this is an excellent dish for a special or romantic occasion where you want to impress. This is a small portion so be sure to supplement with a hearty side dish. Alternatively, this can be served as an appetizer.
- 6 medium fresh scallops
- 1 large yam (or 2 sweet potatoes)
- 1⁄2 cup walnuts
- 5 teaspoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 3 teaspoons red wine vinegar
- 3 teaspoons walnut oil
- 3 teaspoons chopped shallots (or green onion)
- 2 cups baby arugula leaves
- 1 tablespoon soft butter
Directions See How It's Made
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- For the puree: Wash the yam and towel dry. Puncture it with a fork in several places, season it with salt and pepper, wrap it in a damp paper towel and microwave on high for approximately 3 minutes (until the center is cooked and soft). Cut the cooked yam in half long ways and scoop out the flesh. Puree in a food processor or with a blender. Season with butter, salt, and pepper to taste. Set aside.
- For the vinaigrette: Place walnuts on a baking sheet and cover with the granulated sugar. Bake at 350 for 7-8 minutes. Remove from oven and cool. Then, in a bowl, whisk together the walnut oil, 4 tsp of olive oil, vinegar, walnuts, and shallots. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
- For the scallops: Season the scallops with salt and pepper on both sides. Heat a non-stick pan on high heat (7 out of 10 on my stove) with the remaining 1 tsp of olive oil. Sauté the scallops a few minutes on each side until golden brown. Total sauté time should be about 6 minutes.
- Once scallops are ready, quickly toss 2 tsps of the vinaigrette with the arugula leaves in a separate bowl.
- For assembly: Spread the puree onto each plate into a flat pancake (you can warm the puree in the microwave if it has become cold). Top the puree pancakes with a small pile of seasoned arugula leaves. Then place 3 sautéed scallops on top of the leaves. Finish each plate by drizzling the vinaigrette over the top, drizzling around the plates edge for a "gourmet" finish!