Alaska Scallops on Serrano Ham and Lentil Salad

Metric version of recipe

Yields 8 portions

Ingredient Amount
For the marinade  
Spanish fino sherry ¼ cup
Olive oil, extra virgin, divided use 2 Tbsp.
Piment d’Espelette 6 tsp.
Orange juice ½ cup
Pebrella 2 tsp.
Cumin, ground 2 tsp.
Salt, divided use 2 tsp.
Alaskan scallops (about 40) 4 lb. 7 oz.
Black pepper, freshly ground ¼ tsp.
For the lentils  
Yellow onions, coarsely chopped 2 ½ cups
Garlic cloves, halved 6 ea.
Flat-leaf parsley sprigs 6 ea.
Bay leaves 2 ea.
Black baluga lentils, rinsed 2 cups
Olive oil, extra virgin 1 Tbsp.
Spanish choizo sausage, cut into small dice (about 3 cups) 1 pound
For the vinaigrette  
Sherry vinegar ¼ cup
Red wine vinegar 2 Tbsp.
Honey 2 tsp.
Pebrella 2 tsp.
Garlic, minced 1 Tbsp.
Orange zest, finely chopped 1/8 orange
Extra virgin Spanish olive oil 2/3 cup
Salt 1 tsp.
Black pepper ½ tsp.
Pimentos, cut into large dice 4 ea.
Celery rib, finely diced 3/4 cup
Fennel, finely diced ¾ cup
Olive oil, extra virgin, divided use 4 Tbsp.
Serrano ham, crumbled 1 cup
Flat-leaf parsley, chopped 8 tsp.


  1. Prepare the scoallops. Whisk together the sherry, ¼ cup of the oil, the piment d’Esplette, orange juice pebrella, cumin, and 1 teaspoon of salt. Wash and pat dry the scallops. Gently toss in the marinade, cover, and chill for 1 to 4 hours.
  2. Make the lentils. Tie the onions, garlic, parsley, and bay leaves in cheesecloth and place in a medium saucepan. Add the lentils, cover with water by 1 inch, and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat to low, cover partially, and simmer until cooked through but still firm, 40 to 50 minutes. Drain and set aside.
  3. Head the oil in a large sauté pan over medium-eat and sauté the chorizo, stirring frequently, until barely browned, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a strainer set over a bowl to drain the grease, then drain briefly on paper towels. Add the chorizo to the lentils and set aside.
  4. Make the vinaigrette. Whisk together the vinegars, honey, pebrella, garlic, orange zest, and 2/3 cup oil in a small bowl. Taste and adjust seasoning with the salt and pepper. Toss with the lentils and add the pimentos, celery, and fennel.
  5. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a medium sauté pan over medium-high heat and cook the Serrano ham until crisp and browned, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  6. Cook the scallops. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large heavy sauté pan over medium-heat. Season with the scallops with 1 teaspoon of salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Sear for 4 minutes on one side, or until nicely browned and crisp. Turn and sear for 1 minute on the other side, or until browned.
  7. Divide the lentil salad among 8 serving plates. Top with 5 scallops, crisp side up. Garnish with the crumbled Serrano ham and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of parsley.

Additional tips

Recipe credit: Susan Walter for the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute, as presented at the 2006 Worlds of Flavor International Conference and Festival. Published with permission of the author. All rights reserved. Presented at the World Marketplace on Thursday, Nov. 2, 2006.

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