Seared Scallops Nicoise
In this take on traditional salad nicoise, scallops replace the usual tuna. Slice very large scallops in half crosswise before seasoning. Slice very large scallops in half crosswise before sprinkling them with the peppercorn mixture.
- Servings: 6
Source: Martha Stewart Living, June 2000
- 1 1/2 teaspoons each whole pink peppercorns, dried green peppercorns, white peppercorns, and black peppercorns
- 2 1/2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 7 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 pounds haricots verts, stem ends trimmed
- 1 1/2 pounds (about 2 cups) fava beans, shelled
- 1 pound sea scallops
- 1/2 cup Nicoise olives (about 3 ounces)
- 1 small red onion, thinly sliced lengthwise
- 12 small red tomatoes, halved
- 12 small orange tomatoes, halved
- 3 eggs, hard-boiled, cut into 8 wedges
- Fresh tarragon, for garnish
- Lemon wedges, (optional)
In a spice grinder or clean coffee grinder, coarsely grind each type of peppercorn separately. Transfer to a small bowl, and toss to combine. Set aside.
In another small bowl, mix vinegar and mustard; add 6 tablespoons oil in a slow steady stream, whisking continuously. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and set dressing aside.
Fill a large bowl with ice and water. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add haricots verts, and cook until bright green and just tender, about 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon, lift beans from water, and transfer to the ice bath to cool. Remove from ice bath with slotted spoon; transfer to a clean kitchen towel. Pat dry; transfer beans to a large bowl. Set aside.
Return the water to a boil. Add fava beans, and cook until just tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain and transfer to the ice bath. Drain in a colander. Remove and discard inner skins from fava beans, and add beans to haricots verts.
Sprinkle scallops with salt and reserved peppercorn mixture. Heat a cast-iron skillet until very hot over medium-high heat. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil. Add half the scallops, and cook until well browned, 2 to 3 minutes on each side. Transfer to a plate, and set aside.
Add remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil to the skillet. Repeat with the remaining scallops, and transfer to the plate.
Add olives, onion, tomatoes, and reserved dressing to beans; toss to combine.
Arrange salad on six plates. Top with eggs and scallops; garnish with tarragon. Serve with lemon wedges if desired.