No Spoon Necessary is back in business people!  In celebration of spring and being back up and running, I wanted to lighten things up around here.  I also wanted to cook with one of my favorite proteins.  SCALLOPS!
raw scallops final1

Boy hates scallops.  Do not ask me to explain… I can’t, other than say there is clearly something wrong with his palate.  I LOVE them, like, LOVE LOVE LOVE them!  Especially big, juicy, succulent U 10’s.  Yum Yum Yum.  I like them raw and sliced sashimi thin.  I like them ceviched (cooked’ in citrus juice… lemon, lime, orange, pineapple.  Whatever!  All good to me!!).  I eat ’em up grilled.  I devour them broiled or blow torched.

scallops cooking 1

I will go to town on them accompanied with a salad…risotto…seaweed…with noodles…by themselves…or doused with Sriracha.  Pretty much my love of them runs Bubba Gump Deep (you know in the movie where he goes on and on about shrimp… yea, thats me with scallops).This salad is a great way to enjoy scallops.  It is delightfully fresh and light, yet satisfies even the biggest appetite.  With candied walnuts, gorgonzola, and a super refreshing Strawberry Balsamic Vinaigrette with the perfect hint of lime, it is sure to please.  

candied walnuts1Well, please all people who aren’t named ‘Boy”.  It’s the perfect mix of a little spice and a little sweet.  It has a creamy, yet crunchy texture with a touch of acidity… it rocks my world.

swrawberry vin final1PLUS! With bathing suit season in full gear, who doesn’t want to add a little salad to their diet?  Especially a jazzed up one like this!?  And, its really pretty… making it aesthetically pleasing if you want to have some friends over for lunch. 🙂

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Make this, and tell me I’m wrong – that this isn’t one of the best salads you have ever tasted… I triple dog dare you!

scallop salad best




4.5 from 2 votes
Blackened Scallop Salad with Strawberry Balsamic Vinaigrette, Candied Walnuts & Gorgonzola
Strawberry Balsamic Vinaigrette Prep Time: 5 minutes Inactive Time: 30 minutes Yield: 1 ½ Cups Serves: 4-6 Candied Walnuts: Prep Time: 18 minutes Yieild: 8 oz. Walnuts
  • Strawberry Balsamic Vinaigrette:
  • 1 Heaping Cup Fresh Strawberries – Hulled and Roughly Chopped
  • 1 ½ TB Shallot – Roughly Chopped (about 1 small shallot)
  • 2 TB Lime Juice (can substitute Orange Juice)
  • 3 tsp Honey (can substitute agave syrup or sugar)
  • 2 TB White Balsamic Vinegar
  • ½ tsp Dijon Mustard
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • ¼ tsp Cracked Black Pepper
  • ¼ Scant Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Candied Walnuts:
  • 8 oz . Walnut Pieces or halves (about 2 ½ Cups if you do not own a scale)*
  • ½ Cup Brown Sugar (packed)
  • 3 TB Milk
  • 1 TB Maple Syrup
  • ½ Heaping tsp Cinnamon
  • Pinch of Coarse Salt
  • ½ tsp Vanilla Extract
  • *you can substitute pecans , almonds, or nut of your choice
  • Salad:
  • 2 Cups Spring/Arugula Lettuce Mix
  • Gorgonzola Cheese - Crumbled , to taste
  • 1/2 Red Onion - thinly sliced
  • 1 Recipe Strawberry Balsamic Viniagrette - to taste
  • 1 Recipe Candied Walnuts - to taste
  • Salt and Pepper - taste
  • 1 # - Scallops - Grilled (I used U10s).
  • *To Grill: Pat Scallops dry , sprinkle with blackening seasoning. Preheat a grill or grill pan over medium high heat. Cook them for 2-4 minutes per side*
  1. Strawberry Balsamic Vinaigrette:
  2. In the bowl of a food processor (or blender) Pulse Shallots and Strawberries a few times.
  3. Add Lime Juice, Honey, Balsamic, Dijon Mustard, Salt and Pepper. While Pulsing (or with blades running if using a blender) drizzle in Olive Oil. Puree until desired consistency.
  4. Taste and adjust for salt, pepper, lime juice, balsamic according to taste.
  5. *If you are not a fan of seeds; strain through a fine mesh strainer into a container or bowl.*
  6. I recommend allowing the Vinaigrette flavors to marry in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes- up to overnight.
  7. Candied Walnuts:
  8. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  9. Line a sheet pan with aluminum foil. Place walnuts, in a single layer on the baking sheet and Roast, 10 minutes, or until toasted. Set aside. (After 8 minutes, check to make sure Nuts are not burning!)
  10. Line a separate baking sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat baking mat.
  11. In a medium sauce pan stir together Sugar, Milk, Maple Syrup, Cinnamon, and Salt.
  12. Cook over Medium- high heat for 5- 8 minutes (or until mixture reaches 236 degrees), Stirring with a wooden spoon occasionally.
  13. Remove Pan from Heat and Stir in Vanilla.
  14. Fold in Walnuts, stirring to Coat.
  15. Remove Walnuts to parchment lined pan and separate with a fork. You want to work quickly so they do not clump together.
  16. Cool. Enjoy. Or Store in an airtight container.
  17. Salad:
  18. Layer all salad ingredients, scatter candied walnuts on top, and dress with desired amount of Strawberry Viniagrette. serve with fork, dig in!



Blacked Scallop Salad