Seared Scallops with Black Pudding and Crispy Bacon
Grainy Clonakilty black pudding from West Cork has become a favourite accompaniment for scallops in recent years, and is delicious served with bacon and classic beurre blanc sauce.
4 rindless streaky bacon rashers
4 slices Clonakilty black pudding
12 large scallops
2 tbsp sunflower oil
1/2 lemon, pips removed
25g/1oz mixed baby leaf and herb salad
2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper
warm beurre blanc sauce (see below)
Preheat the grill and arrange the bacon rashers and black pudding on the grill rack. Cook for 2-3 minutes, turning once until the rashers are crispy and the black pudding is cooked through.
Meanwhile, pat the scallops dry with some kitchen paper. Heat a large frying pan until it is quite hot. Add the sunflower oil, then add the scallops and sear over a high heat for 1 minute on each side until richly browned and crispy. Do this in batches if your frying pan is not very large. Transfer them to a plate, then add a squeeze of lemon juice and season to taste.
Place the baby salad leaf and herb salad in a bowl and season to taste. Drizzle over the extra-virgin olive oil, add a squeeze of lemon juice and gently toss the leaves to coat.
Arrange a mound of the dressed salad towards the back of each serving plate. Arrange the scallops around the dressed salad and pour a thin stream of the beurre blanc around the scallops. Place a piece of black pudding in the middle of each plate and top each one with a crispy rasher broken in two to serve.
Take care when making this sauce: if allowed to become too hot or too cold the sauce will split. To find the perfect temperature, it’s best to test with your finger - it should feel warm, not hot.
In a small heavy pan, boil 45ml/3 tbsp each of white wine vinegar and dry white wine with 2 finely chopped shallots.
Add 1 tbsp double cream/crème fraîche if liked, and re-boil to a glaze.
Gradually whisk in 225g/8oz very cold butter, cubed, to make a creamy sauce.
Finally, bring just to a boil over high heat, whisking continuously.
Strain if liked, season to taste and serve.