Seared Sea Scallops and Crunchy Kale – Serves two

…and Spring has finally arrived here in Chicago.  I absolutely adore this time of year as I walk down small side streets seeing all the flowers in bloom.  After a bit of a hiatus, I am coming back and am equipped with some wonderful things to share.  Recently I made this dish and it has become a new favorite.

Kale.  What do you really know about it?  Time for a quick informative breakdown on kale.  Here goes – for starters, it is an absolute powerhouse due to its potent level of antioxidants (carotenoids and flavonoids).  Kale is high in vitamins K, C, A as well as the following minerals: calcium, maganese, copper, and potassium.  Like many greens, kale is an excellent source of fiber and omega-3’s.  Kale has recently been a popular choice for many meals due to the discovery of its role in possible cardiovascular benefits, cancer prevention (colon, bladder, prostate, breast, and ovarian), detoxification, and chronic inflammation.

This cruciferous vegetable is pungent in flavor making it easy to prepare in various ways while still obtaining various health benefits! Whether raw or cooked, savor each bite and figure out what you taste.  For me, when raw, the crunch and freshness is delectable – great for spring salads.  When cooked it is buttery and can sometimes seem naturally spiced.  In following dish raw kale was utilized due to its ease in preparation when in a bind.

kale and scallopsRAW KALE SALAD BASE (all ingredients are to be split evenly amongst two bowls)

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups raw kale – chopped
  • 1/4 cup red pepper – slivered and chopped
  • 1/8 cup green olives – minced
  • 1/2 small cippolini onion – minced
  • 1/2 peeled and softened sweet potato – cubed (If using a microwave to soften a sweet potato – split the potato, puncture with 3-5 holes and cook for 2-3 minutes otherwise bring 1 cup of water to a boil and toss in the potato for 5-10 minutes)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil to dress the salad

Process

  1. Divide the kale and spread on the bottom of a salad bowl.
  2. Dress the greens with the red pepper, cippolini onions, and olives.
  3. Place the softened and cubed sweet potato atop the items from steps 1 and 2.
  4. Drizzle olive oil on the top.

SEARED SEA SCALLOPS

Ingredients

  • 6 large scallops (Dry pack sea scallops were used for this dish) – halved
  • 1-2 tbsp coconut oil to coat the pan
  • Sprinkle as desired – parsley flakes

Process

  1. Under high heat for 4-5 minutes allow the coconut oil and parsley flakes to reach a point of possible smoke then add the scallops.
  2. Allow each side to sear for 2-3 minutes based upon whether a golden brown appearance has been noted.
  3. Then toss and sear each side once more briefly while paying attention to its buoyancy.  They should not be firm – then you’ve overcooked!
  4. Remove from heat and place the halves atop the kale base.
  5. Optional – cracked black peppercorns and coase sea salt to taste.
  6. Voila.  Enjoy with some classical background music!

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