Tuesday, November 16, 2010

monday - winter salad with seared scallops and roasted squash

Last night I used a recipe from EatingWell magazine for winter salad with roasted squash and pomegranate vinaigrette, but decided to add seared scallops to make it a more substantial entrée. I used delicata squash instead of butternut squash--no big surprise given my current obsession with it. The pomegranate vinaigrette was delicious and made good use of a bottle of pomegranate glaze (which I'm pretty sure is the same as pomegranate molasses, based on the ingredient list) that I bought at Trader Joe's ages ago and has been lurking in my refrigerator door ever since. The salad would be great as written without the scallops (and perhaps with a sprinkle of blue cheese as the EW recipe note suggests). I left out the pomegranate seeds, but they would give it a nice sweet crunch.

Winter Salad with Seared Scallops and Roasted Squash

Pomegranate Vinaigrette
1/2 tablespoon minced shallot
1/2 tablespoon pomegranate molasses or pomegranate glaze
1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon or thyme
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon water

Squash & Salad
1 pound winter squash, such as delicata or butternut, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (leave unpeeled if using delicata)
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
2 cups torn frisée or curly endive
2 cups torn radicchio
2 tablespoons walnuts, coarsely chopped

1/2 pound dry sea scallops, approximately 8
1 teaspoon unsalted butter
2 teaspoons olive oil
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 375°F.

To prepare vinaigrette: Mix shallot, pomegranate molasses, vinegar, lemon juice, tarragon (or thyme), and salt in a small bowl. Whisk in the 2 tablespoons oil, then water.

To prepare squash: Place squash on a baking sheet, drizzle with 2 teaspoons oil, and toss to coat. Spread in a single layer and sprinkle with thyme, salt, and pepper. Roast, stirring once or twice, until fork-tender, 15 to 25 minutes (depending on the type of squash). Let cool.

To prepare salad: Place frisée (or endive), radicchio, and the squash in a large bowl. Add the vinaigrette and gently toss to coat.
To prepare scallops: Remove the small side muscle from the scallops, rinse with cold water, and thoroughly pat dry. Add the butter and 2 teaspoons oil to a large skillet (preferably cast iron) on high heat. Salt and pepper the scallops. Once the fat begins to smoke, gently add the scallops, making sure they are not touching each other. Sear the scallops for 2 minutes on each side. The scallops should have a 1/4-inch golden crust on each side while still being translucent in the center. Transfer scallops to a plate.
To serve, divide the salad and scallops among 2 plates and sprinkle with walnuts.
Makes 2 servings.

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