Sucrine is my favorite heirloom lettuce. Rooted in the French word for “sugar,” sucrine is a smaller variety of romaine with soft, silky leaves, buttery texture, and, as the name suggests, a sweet-ish flavor.
For this appetizer which can be made in about half an hour, sweet, fresh scallops are paired with slightly wilted sucrine lettuce leaves, poached chicken eggs and an herb vinaigrette.
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2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 head sucrine lettuce, trimmed
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (for the scallops)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (for the vinaigrette)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
salt and pepper, to taste
1 teaspoon fresh oregano, chopped
Season scallops with pepper and set aside.
In a large skillet, heat olive oil until almost smoking. Add scallops to the pan and cook without moving them until crisp and golden brown, about 5 to 6 minutes; do not turn. Remove to a plate and set aside.
Add sucrine to the pan and briefly wilt, about 10-20 seconds. If the sucrine is completely wilted, you’ve waited too long. Remove to a small plate and set aside.
To view a brief demo on how to poach an egg, click here.
For the herb vinaigrette: combine 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, lemon juice and oregano. Whisk or mix thoroughly. Taste for salt and pepper, and use as needed.
To assemble: Place poached egg in the center of a salad plate. Arrange scallops around the egg. Place a sucrine lettuce leaf between each scallop. Spoon dressing over lettuce and poached egg. Serve at once.
Time: About 30 minutes.