This is one of my favourite ways to eat scallops. Use the tiny, sweet, French Puy lentils rather than the usual ones and it takes this dish to another level. Braising the lentils with rosemary, celery and onion adds depth of flavour and the lentils hold their shape rather than boiling to a mush. Make sure you don’t overcook the scallops – they should still be a bit glassy looking in the middle when you cut them. Like most seafood, overcooked is dry and tough. Chorizo brings in the flavours of Spain – you can use either a spicy or a plain one depending on your taste.
Warm Salad of Scallops, Chorizo and Puy Lentils
1/2 mugful Puy lentils
1 mugful chicken or vegetable stock
1 onion – chopped
1/2 stick of celery – chopped
1 fat clove garlic – chopped
5cm piece chorizo sausage – diced
1 tbsp chopped rosemary
12 king scallops
5cm piece of chorizo diced
8 sage leaves
Juice of 1 lemon
4 large handfuls mixed salad leaves
Drizzle of olive oil
Salt and pepper
- Cook the lentils – in a thick bottomed pan, sauté the chorizo until crisp. Add the onions, celery and garlic and fry gently until soft. Add the chopped rosemary and cook for a few minutes. Add the lentils and stock, bring to the boil, cover the pan with a tight fitting lid and cook on a low heat for 25 min.
- Once the lentils are finished cooking, cook the remaining chorizo in a heavy bottomed frying pan until crisp. Remove to drain on a piece of kitchen paper. Fry the sage leaves until crisp and drain them on kitchen paper too.
- Season the scallops with a little salt and pepper. Reheat the frying pan with a little oil to smoking and add the scallops. Cook for 1 min each side, add the lemon juice to the pan – it will sizzle and reduce quickly. Remove from the heat.
- Put the dish together: Place a large handful of salad leaves in the centre of a dinner plate, scatter the lentils over the salad – 2 or 3 tablespoons should be enough, top with the scallops, sprinkle over the fried chorizo and crumble the sage leaves over the top. Drizzle with a little olive oil and the lemony juices from the pan. Serve immediately.