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Shellfish salad with oranges and fennel

June 7, 2006

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Serves 8

Goldstein takes the traditional Sicilian pairing of orange and fennel and adds shellfish, simply poached in wine. If you can't find fennel, use thinly sliced celery instead.

1 cup olive oil
1/2 cup orange juice
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon freshly ground coarse black pepper
Salt, to taste
3 navel oranges
2-3fennel bulbs, cored, trimmed, and thinly sliced lengthwise
2 cups dry white wine or equal parts wine and water
18 medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
18 sea scallops, foot muscle removed
12 small squid, cleaned, bodies cut into narrow rings, and tentacles left whole
Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley or fennel leaves (for garnish)
1. In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil with the orange and lemon juices. Whisk in the pepper and salt; set aside.

2. Cut a thin slice from the top and bottom of each orange to reveal the flesh. Stand the oranges on a flat side and remove the peel in wide strips, cutting downward and following the contour of the fruit. Holding each orange over a bowl, cut along both sides of every segment, releasing them from the membrane and allowing them to drop into the bowl. Using the knife tip, pry out any seeds. Squeeze the membrane over the bowl to collect extra juice; add this to the vinaigrette at serving time.

3. Place the fennel in a bowl, add half the vinaigrette, and toss to coat it. Divide the fennel evenly among 8 salad plates, forming a bed on each one, or arrange the fennel in a bed on a large platter.

4. In a saucepan, bring the wine to a simmer over medium heat. Add the shrimp and cook gently for 4 minutes or just until they turn pink and are cooked through. (Do not overcook or they will be tough.) Using a slotted spoon, transfer the shrimp to a bowl.

5. Add the scallops to the shrimp cooking liquid. Simmer gently for 2 minutes or until they are just opaque. With the slotted spoon, transfer to the bowl of shrimp.

6. Add the squid to the pan and cook for 1 minute or until they turn opaque. Add to the shrimp mixture. Sprinkle about one-third of the remaining vinaigrette over the seafood and toss gently.

7. Using the slotted spoon, remove the orange segments from the bowl and distribute over the fennel. Add the warm seafood evenly over the salad. Add the orange juice from the bowl to the remaining vinaigrette, tasting as you add, and sprinkle the vinaigrette over the salad. Add parsley. Serve warm or at room temperature.