Asparagus and beans are a classic salad combo. We’ve kicked it up a notch with a zesty lemon dressing and served it with seared scallops dusted with smoked paprika for an added robust flavour. And for extra crunch? Scatter some crisped onions or shallots overtop, if you wish; these are easy to make, but also available in various local food stores.
2 Tbsp (30 mL) lemon juice
1 tsp (5 mL) Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp (2 mL) lemon zest
1/2 tsp (2 mL) maple syrup or honey
3 Tbsp (45 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
1 lb (454 g) fresh asparagus, preferably with thick stalks
1 cup (250 mL) fava beans (see tip)
1/2 cup (125 mL) sugar snap peas
8 large scallops, about 1/2 lb (225 g)
1/2 tsp (2 mL) smoked paprika
1/2 tsp (2 mL) ground cumin
1 Tbsp (15 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp (15 mL) unsalted butter
Juice from half a lemon
1/2 cup (125 mL) fresh pea shoots
1/2 cup (125 mL) prepared crisped onions or shallots (optional)
In large bowl, make dressing by combining lemon juice, mustard, lemon zest, and syrup or honey. Stir to blend. Slowly whisk in olive oil until emulsified. Set aside.
Snap woody ends from asparagus spears and discard. Using mandoline or vegetable peeler, shave spears lengthwise into long fronds. Place in bowl with dressing. Do not toss.
In small pot of boiling water, cook fava beans for about 4 minutes, or until tender but still bright green. Remove with slotted spoon to bowl of ice water to immediately stop the cooking. Drain and remove outer shells, and add beans to asparagus.
Add snap peas to boiling water and blanch for 1 minute, or just until bright green but still crisp. Remove with slotted spoon to bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Drain and blot dry. Add to asparagus and fava beans. Set aside.
Remove side muscle from scallop and discard. Pat scallops dry with paper towels. Dust proportionately with paprika and cumin. In large skillet, heat oil on high. Add butter to pan. When it sizzles, gently add scallops to hot pan, being careful that scallops don’t touch each other. You may need to cook scallops in batches, adding a little more oil and butter to pan depending on size of skillet. Sear scallops for about 2 minutes per side or until a light golden crust forms. Transfer to clean plate as they are done. Drizzle with lemon juice.
To serve salad, toss asparagus, beans, and peas together with dressing from bottom of bowl.
Serve individual portions with a couple of seared scallops on top of each. Garnish with pea shoots and scatter some crispy onions overtop, if using.
- Depending on the season, fava beans may be hard to find. If so, you can substitute with frozen peas, thawed.
- Want to make your own crispy onions or shallots? Use a mandoline to thinly slice peeled sweet onion or shallots. Heat about 3 in (7.5 cm) oil in wok. Test temperature by dropping a small piece of onion into hot oil. It should sizzle and quickly turn a light golden colour and rise to the surface. Remove with sieve. Stir-fry remaining onion or shallots in batches so as not to crowd pan. It only takes a minute. Quickly remove with sieve to prevent them from getting too dark. Transfer to paper towel-lined plate to drain. Cool and scatter over salad.