Scallop Nicoise Salad is a gorgeous healthy spring salad to brighten your day. A twist on the classic salad nicoise with perfectly seared sea scallops and a tangy caper vinaigrette.
Nothing brings me joy like a big plate of spring vegetables, and friends I am looking for all the joy in all the places right now.
- Perfectly seared sea scallops – perfect meaning a salty crust and tender rich and luscious center.
- Crisp spring asparagus – first of the season, lightly cooked to retain that bright green grassy spring flavor.
- Spicy young radishes – pungent, in the best way, peppery, crisp and refreshing.
- Spring potatoes – red-skinned, young and creamy. Farmer's market spring potatoes make my heart happy.
- Creamy avocado – always welcome to my spring party
- Farm fresh eggs – jammy is my jam. Eggs. Newness. Life. Spring. All the things.
- Spring greens – I am a fiend for tender spring greens, pea tendrils, sprouts, natures little spring love note. I love them all.
- Tangy and bright caper vinaigrette – pulls it all together making this one of my all-time favorite salads in the history of the free world. Dramatic. Don't care. It's the truth.
Let's get cooking!
INGREDIENTS YOU WILL NEED TO MAKE THIS SEARED SCALLOP NICOISE SALAD:
See the full recipe below for ingredient quantities.
- Scallops – I used large sea scallops for this recipe, but in a pinch, smaller bay scallops would also work.
- Red skinned potato
- Spring veggies – Asparagus, radish, spring greens
- Capers, dijon mustard, good olive oil
Tools You Will Use:
TIPS TO MAKE PERFECTLY SEARED SCALLOPS:
- Thoroughly pat dry your scallops, you want to begin with a dry scallop
- Season with salt
- In a large saute pan heat olive oil and butter, once the fat begins to smoke, add the scallops to the pan making sure they aren’t touching.
- Sear the scallops for 1 1/2 minutes per side.
- Do not overcook it! They should have a lightly golden crust on each side.
WHAT KIND OF SCALLOPS TO USE:
I prefer larger sea scallops in this recipe. However, in a pinch, smaller bay scallops will work just fine.
In this pan-seared scallop lemon pasta recipe, I broke down the various types of scallops and the best use for each.
NUTRITION NERD CORNER 🤓
BENEFITS OF SEASONAL EATING
I am a HUGE advocate for seasonal eating. I believe that somehow in this strange world nature has a divine plan that helps guide us to make food decisions that are health-supportive.
Seasonal food is tastier simply because crops picked at the peak of freshness will always taste better.
In spring I look forward to the first veggies to pop up from the ground; asparagus, spring radishes, spring greens, artichokes, sugar snap peas, dandelion greens, and fresh spring peas.
Most of the produce that is abundant in spring provides vital nutrients for liver support. Dandelion greens and artichoke specifically, I love to lean into additional liver support in the spring knowing that this is our body's innate wisdom to renew and restart in the spring.
Visit your local farmers market or inquire if there are CSA or local farm deliveries in your area. My farmer's markets are still open during the quarantine and in certain areas, farmers' markets are offering call-ahead orders. Last weekend my mom was able to drive to her local farmers market, after placing an order for the week, and they simply opened her truck and placed her supply of farm-fresh veggies right in. No contact.
DIETARY MODIFICATIONS FOR SCALLOP NICOISE SALAD:
This recipe is gluten-free and paleo-friendly.
- Keto – Remove the potato from the salad, you can easily replace it with roasted cauliflower or eliminate.
- Vegetarian/ Vegan – The star of this salad is the seared scallops but you could easily modify by searing hearts of palm which are the perfect substitute for scallops. See this great recipe from One Green Planet on how to sear hearts of palm. For a vegan version, you will also have to eliminate the egg.
- Low Fodmap – For a more traditional low fodmap meal you would need to eliminate the avocado and reduce the amount of asparagus per serving, otherwise this dish is low-fodmap friendly.
RECIPE MODIFICATIONS – Quarantine “Make it Work” options;
- No scallops, no problem – sub for shrimp or tuna (classic)
- Veggie mash-up – you can seriously use any veggies you have around, roasted carrots or cauliflower, cucumber or tomato. Make. It. Work.
- Caper vinaigrette, no capers, no problem – chop olives, or pickled vegetables, or forgo all the pickled goodness altogether and just make a dijon vinaigrette.
More Spring Recipes You'll Love:
I hope you love this Seared Scallop Nicoise Salad with a Caper Vinaigrette! If you make it sure to tag me @abrapappa on Instagram so I can share your photo!
Seared Scallop Nicoise Salad with a Caper Vinaigrette
- 10 large sea scallops
- 2 medium red skinned potatoes
- 6 medium radishes, sliced
- 2 large eggs
- 1 medium avocado
- 1 lb. asparagus
- 4 cups mixed salad greens
- To make the dressing, combine all ingredients whisk or shake well to combine, set aside.
- Sear scallops -In a hot skillet add a small drizzle of olive oil and 1 tsp of butter. Season scallops with sea salt and sear in hot skillet for 1 1/2 mintues per side. Set scallops aside.
- In the meantime place a pot of water on the stove to boil (you will boil potatoes, asparagus, and eggs in the same pot).
- Add potatoes and boil until tender, remove potatoes with a slotted spoon and allow to cool,then slice.
- Add asparagus to boiling water and boil for 3 minutes, remove from water and immediately submerge in a bowl of ice water to stop cooking. Set aside.
- Add eggs to boiling water (carefully) and boil for 6 minutes. Remove eggs from boiling water and submerge in ice water. Peel eggs and set aside (6 minutes is the perfect jammy eggs. If you prefer hard-boiled cook for 9 minutes)
- Assemble salad. Greens on bottom, top with asparagus, potatoes, sliced radish, sliced avocado, eggs sliced in half, and seared scallops. Drizzle with dressing and serve immediately.
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