– My MasterChef Romantic Appetiser –
Pan-fried Scallops with Black Pudding and Warm Fennel Salad
I love the BBC cookery contest MasterChef and avidly watch it every year; however, one of the aspects that amuses me about the television series, is the constant use of scallops in the contestant’s dishes…….I have seen pan-fried scallops, seared scallops, poached scallops, fire-roasted scallops and all served on beds of varies vegetable purées with an assortment of chorizo sausages, bacon, pancetta and black pudding. There is no denying the popularity of this wonderful shellfish and I do love this glamorous celebrity ingredient, so, when I received my hamper from Delish Fish recently, (for my winning photo on Fish is the Dish) I was delighted to see that part of my fishy booty was a packet of wild king scallops, shelled and ready to devour. I immediately began to think about developing a recipe for them, but in the meantime I discovered some queen scallops lurking in my freezer that needed cooking, so I decided to use them for my experimental dish, just in case it all went horribly wrong and I ruined my beautiful wild king scallops! A message for John from Delish Fish, your wild king scallops are on my menu next, now that I know this recipe is a winner!
After my rather mocking tone about scallops and black pudding you may wonder why I have decided to share a recipe for this popular MasterChef combination, well the answer is easy, it is a wonderful marriage of textures and flavours and I rather fancied it as special dish for a celebratory occasion. I did stop short of adding the ubiquitous vegetable purée however, I wanted a fresh flavour and texture for my winning duo, and that had to be a fennel. I wanted a crunch but not too much, so I devised a warm fennel salad where the crunchy edge had just been taken of the sliced fennel, and it could be served wearing a demure citrus dressing. The whole flavour combination could have failed on a colossal scale, but luckily it didn’t, and it was just so elegant and full of piscine sophistication. I was, as you may have gathered, very pleased and smug about my new romantic recipe, and I hope you may try this for your romantic appetiser this Valentine’s Day.
So here it is with a flourish of fennel, my recipe for Pan-Fried Scallops with Black Pudding and Warm Fennel Salad – look out for my next recipe when I will use my wild king scallops from Scotland, and, I also have a few baked treats up my culinary sleeve too, see you tomorrow, Karen.
Pan-Fried Scallops with Black Pudding & Warm Fennel Salad
|Prep time||10 minutes|
|Cook time||30 minutes|
|Total time||40 minutes|
|By author||Karen S Burns-Booth|
- 1 Small fennel bulb, finely sliced (greenery set aside for garnish)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 100g black pudding, cut into slices
- 8 to 10 fresh scallops & corals, with muscle removed
- 25g butter
- 1 lemon, zest and juice of
- salt and black pepper
- frisée lettuce (to serve)
- caper berries (for garnish)
- 2 tablespoons vinaigrette
A romantic appetiser for two, perfect for Valentine's day or another special occasion.
|Step 1||Pre-heat the oven to 200C/400F. Place the sliced fennel bulb into an oven-proof dish and add the olive oil, stir well and roast the fennel for 20 minutes or until it is just slightly softened. Add the lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste and set aside to serve warm later.|
|Step 2||Add half the butter to a pan and fry the black pudding slices for 2 to 3 minutes in each side, set aside and keep them warm. Wipe the pan out with a paper towel and add the rest of the butter, add the fresh scallops and corals to the pan once the butter is hot and frothy and fry for 2 to 3 minutes on both sides, or until just opaque.|
|Step 3||Arrange the frisée lettuce leaves on a plate along with a scallop shell if you have one. Spoon the warm fennel salad (and lemony and olive oil juices) to one side of the scallop shell as well as adding a spoon of the fennel salad to the shell, before adding the black pudding slices and arranging the scallops and corals on top of the black pudding.|
|Step 4||Scatter the lemon zest and fennel greenery over the black pudding and scallops, and garnish the fennel salad with the caper berries. Finally dress the salad leaves with the vinaigrette and serve it with warm bread rolls or slices of rye bread.|
Mark Willis says
Well Karen, its looks fabulous! Unfortunately it wouldn’t do for me, as I don’t eat seafood, and I suppose it wouldn’t be in the spirit of the occasion to scrape the scallops to one side and just eat the Black Pudding…
Your photos of the dish really do look like something out of a posh cookbook. Beautiful.
Thanks Mark, shame you cannot eat seafood, still, the black pudding and fennel salad would be good together too. Thanks for your lovely comments…..Karen
Dave at eRecipeCards says
Karen, of course your photos are stunning! And the combination sounds perfect.
I have a dinner party this weekend and my menu has been set (bought). I am stuck serving a pecan encrusted sauteed scallop… But I will be thinking of you when I serve it with the “ubiquitous” pea puree I had planned.
With a wink and a nod,
LOL! I am sure that your scallops with the “ubiquitous” pea purée will be just GRAND Dave!
j’adore scallops… never make them… please come and cook them por moi x
I would be over on a flash to cook them for you Dom, as long as you make me some of that lovely local belly pork you recently cooked! Deal?
A Trifle Rushed says
Just two words Karen; Yum! Yum!
Perfect, scallops, black pudding and scrumptious fennel.
Thanks Jude! I was REALLY pleased with the warm fennel salad too, was a great flavour and texture with the scallops!
Allergic to shellfish here, both Todd and myself, so it’s a no go for me as well. We also both despise black pudding, but I just know there are people out there who will love this dish Karen! Now, that warm fennel salad?? I could really go for that. Je t’adore fennel!
Exactly, a fennel salad for you and Todd then Marie!
I always groan now when scallops are served on Masterchef – usually in a row of three on pea puree with a small piece of cured meat. Your dish looks much more interesting but unfortunately it won’t be one I’ll be trying as I’m allergic to them.
LOL! You think the same as me then Corina! What a shame you have a seafood allergy…..xx
It is so true that every other dish seems to involve scallops and some kind of puree, I’m surprised that people still insist on making it! This looks so delicious though and a delightful combination of flavours and textures.
Thanks Kathryn, I was rather pleased with my warm fennel salad which lifted the richness of the black pudding.
Oh Karen, can I come round please? I adore scallops, love black pudding and fennel is my new favourite salad. You have created the perfect dish there.
Thanks Janice,I was VERY pleased with the warm fennel salad, I will make it in the future as a veggie accompaniment too! xx
Good old Masterchef and it’s obsession with scallops & black pudding. Have you noticed this year how many more people are making desserts as their signature dish, must be to try & win Greg over! I love your scallop dish and will be cooking lots of these when I come over to the Dordogne this year along with lots of mussels and oysters…..love them!
Thanks Laura! DON’T forget when you are coming over to stop with us for a few days too! FUN! I have noticed more pudding dishes on MasterChef this year too……and as for oysters, YES, we are in the famous Huitres area here, from the Ile d’Oleron, and I adore them!
Sarah Ballantyne says
This looks delicious – I love scallops but have never thought about combining them with black pudding. I’ll definitely be giving this a go. I have shared this post on FB so some of my friends can see – maybe they’ll cook it and invite me over 😉