Salad of black pudding and scallops with crisp bacon, apples and hazelnuts

Black pudding, scallops and apple are a marriage made in heaven. Try this as a special starter dish for New Year’s Eve or Christmas lunch. If one of the party isn’t keen on scallops, then use rounds of ripe goat’s cheese instead.

Information

  • Serves: 4
  • Difficulty: Easy

Ingredients

  • 4 rashers Ramsay of Carluke streaky smoked bacon
  • 2 tasty British eating apples, peeled, cored and each cut into 8 wedges
  • 12 fresh scallops with orange roes, if you like
  • Good pinch of ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp apple or normal balsamic vinegar, plus a little drizzle
  • 2 tsp hazelnut or walnut oil
  • 1 tbsp mild-flavoured oil such as vegetable or sunflower
  • 6 x 1cm slices Ramsay of Carluke black pudding, cut into half-moons
  • Knob of butter
  • Handful toasted blanched hazelnuts, very roughly chopped
  • 4 good handfuls winter salad leaves, from a bag is fine

Method

1) Heat a frying pan, add the bacon and leave it to sizzle until the fat runs. Cook for about 10 mins, turning once or twice until golden and very crisp.

2) Meanwhile, cut the apples into chunky wedges. Add the apple to the bacon pan and fry for a couple of mins on each side until softened and starting to turn golden. Lift both the bacon and apples from the pan when ready, then set aside on a plate and keep warm in a very low oven. Wipe out the pan with a paper towel.

3) Prepare the scallops and make the vinaigrette. Pat the scallops dry. Season on each side with salt, pepper and the cumin. If you are using the orange roes, pierce a couple of times with a sharp knife. This will stop them from popping at you as they fry. Whisk together the vinegar, oils and salt and pepper to make the vinaigrette.

4) When ready to serve, get the frying pan nice and hot. Add the slices of black pudding to one side of the pan. Add the butter to the other side. Once it foams, add the scallops and fry for 1 min on each side or until caramelised and golden all over. Avoid fiddling with them as they cook. Turn the black pudding when you turn the scallops - it should be dark and sizzling. When ready, take the pan from the heat.

5) Arrange the apples, scallops and black pudding onto 4 plates, then top with a few shards of the crisp bacon. Toss the leaves in the vinaigrette then sit a little bundle of leaves on top of each plate. If you scrunch the leaves with your hands just ever so slightly, they are more likely to stay in place. Scatter the nuts around the salad, then finish the presentation with a little drizzle of the balsamic if you like.