Warm Scallop and Spinach Salad

Total Time:
30 min
20 min
10 min

6 servings

  • 3/4 pound sea scallops
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 large firm-ripe avocado
  • 7 cups tatsoi, (thick, spoon-shaped Asian greens) or baby spinach leaves, washed well and spun dry
  • Praline, recipe follows
  • Praline:
  • 1/3 cup pecans, chopped fine
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne, or to taste
  • 3 tablespoons sugar

Remove tough muscle from side of each scallop if necessary and halve any large scallops. On a sheet of waxed paper combine flour, salt, cumin and cayenne and dip flat sides of each scallop into mixture to coat, knocking off excess. In a skillet heat butter and olive oil over moderately high heat until foam subsides and saute scallops, flat sides down, until golden and just cooked through, about 2 minutes on each flat side. Remove skillet from heat and cool scallops slightly.

In a large bowl whisk together lemon juice, extra-virgin olive oil, mustard, and salt and pepper, to taste, until emulsified. Peel and pit avocado and cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges. Cut wedges in 1/2 crosswise and add to dressing. Add scallops with any liquid remaining in skillet, tatsoi, and Praline and gently toss to coat.


In a bowl stir together pecans, salt, and cayenne. In a dry small heavy skillet or saucepan cook sugar over moderate heat, stirring with a fork, until melted and cook, without stirring, swirling skillet or pan, until a golden caramel. Add pecan mixture and stir to coat nuts with caramel. Spoon praline onto a sheet of foil and cool. Transfer praline to a cutting board and chop fine. Praline can be made 3 days ahead and kept in an airtight container.

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