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Warm Scallop Salad with Parsnips and Wild Mushroom Vinaigrette

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

This salad is packed with exciting flavors and textures. At its center is a pile of crisp greens mixed with sweet parsnips that have been sautéed in butter and then quickly cooked in stock. Seared, juicy scallops surround the greens and mushroom-infused vinaigrette is drizzled around everything. Serve it all on big white plates.

NotesVegetables cut into thin strips cook quickly and retain their flavor and juiciness.

Order of preparation:

• Prepare both vinaigrettes.

• Cook the parsnips; cook the scallops.

• Assemble the salads.

Make-ahead notes:

The sherry and wild mushroom vinaigrettes can be refrigerated up to 3 weeks; whisk to recombine before using.

Makes4 appetizer servings

CostSplurge

Total Timeunder 1 hour

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

One Pot MealYes

OccasionCooking for a date, Formal Dinner Party

Recipe Courseappetizer

Dietary Considerationegg-free, peanut free, soy free, tree nut free

Equipmentmandoline

Five Ingredients or LessYes

Mealdinner

Taste and Texturelight, savory, tangy, umami

Type of Dishsalad, warm salad

Ingredients

  • 4 parsnips, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • ¼ cup Vegetable Stock or low-salt canned vegetable broth
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 large sea scallops
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound mixed wild mushrooms (caps only), such as cremini and shiitake, sliced thin
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 1 small bunch parsley stems (1 to 2 ounces)
  • 3 cups water
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 cups mesclun greens
  • ¼ cup Sherry Vinaigrette
  • About ½ cup Wild Mushroom Vinaigrette (recipe above)

Instructions

  1. For the parsnips:

  2. With a vegetable peeler or mandoline, cut the parsnips into thin strips.

  3. In a medium skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat until it bubbles, and sauté the parsnips 1 minute. Add the stock, season With salt and pepper, and cook until tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Reserve, keeping warm.

  4. For the scallops:

  5. Season the scallops with salt and pepper. In a large skillet over high heat, heat the oil until smoking and sear the scallops until golden brown and medium rare, about 1 to 2 minutes on each side. Remove from the pan.

  6. For the wild mushroom vinaigrette:

  7. In a medium skillet over high heat, heat 2 tablespoon of the oil until smoking and sauté the mushrooms until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes.

  8. Add the thyme, parsley, and water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer until the liquid is reduced by half, 20 to 30 minutes. Strain through a fine strainer, reserving the mushrooms for another use if desired. There should be about 1½ cups of liquid.

  9. Add a pinch of salt to the liquid and whisk in the remaining ½ cup of oil until emulsified. Whisk in the vinegar. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

  10. To serve:

  11. In a salad bowl, toss the mesclun with the sherry vinaigrette. Add the warm parsnip strips and toss. Arrange on 4 salad plates and surround with 3 scallops. Drizzle with the wild mushroom vinaigrette.

  12. Variations:

  13. Substitute shrimp for scallops.

  14. Substitute your favorite greens, torn into small pieces, for mesclun.

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