Mediterranean seafood salad

4saves
2hr30min


2 people made this

About this recipe: Poached mussels, prawns and scallops bring the flavour of southern Italy to this chilled salad. Black squid-ink pasta would be served in restaurants along the Amalfi coast, but spinach, red pepper and egg linguine are also suitable. Enjoy this as a tempting summer lunch or supper dish.

Norma MacMillan

Ingredients
Serves: 4 

  • 2 red peppers, quartered and seeded
  • 225 g (8 oz) raw king or tiger prawns, peeled
  • 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) mussels in shells, scrubbed
  • 125 g (4½ oz) scallops, preferably small bay scallops or queens
  • 200 g (7 oz) linguine, preferably black squid-ink linguine
  • 1 tbsp capers in brine, rinsed
  • salt and pepper
  • Poaching liquid
  • 1 fresh red chilli (optional)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 240 ml (8 fl oz) dry white wine
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced
  • 1 shallot, thinly sliced
  • Dressing
  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1½ tbsp lemon juice
  • To serve
  • 1 head radicchio
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges

Method
Prep:2hr30min  ›  Ready in:2hr30min 

  1. First prepare the poaching liquid. If using the chilli, spear it on a wooden cocktail stick with the garlic. Alternatively, if not using the chilli, slice the garlic. Place in a large heavy-based saucepan with the wine, bay leaf, lemon, shallot and 1/2 tsp salt. Pour in 120 ml (4 fl oz) water. Bring to the boil, then remove from the heat, cover and leave to infuse while you prepare the other ingredients. Taste the liquid occasionally and remove the chilli at any point if its flavour is strong enough in the liquid for your taste.
  2. Preheat the grill to high. Grill the peppers, skin side up, for about 10 minutes or until blistered and blackened. Place in a polythene bag and leave to cool for 5 minutes. Peel off the skins, then finely dice the flesh.
  3. Whisk the dressing ingredients together in a large bowl. Season and set aside. Cut a slit along the back of each prawn, and remove and discard the black vein, if necessary. Set aside.
  4. To prepare the mussels, discard any broken ones or open ones that do not close when tapped. Bring the poaching liquid back to the boil, then reduce the heat to low. Add the mussels and cook for 2–3 minutes or until the shells are open. Using a draining spoon, transfer the mussels to a bowl. Discard any mussels that are still closed. Remove and discard the shells. Add the mussels to the dressing.
  5. Poach the prawns in the same liquid for 2 minutes or until they turn from bluey-grey to pink. Remove the prawns with a draining spoon and add to the mussels in the dressing.
  6. Poach the scallops for 1 1/2 minutes or until they turn opaque. Remove with a draining spoon. Remove any red corals, and chop or discard them as preferred. Chop large scallops, then add to the mussels and prawns.
  7. Strain the poaching liquid, then return it to the pan and add water so there is enough to cook the pasta. Bring to the boil. Add the pasta and cook for 10 minutes, or according to the packet instructions, until al dente. Drain well, then add to the seafood mixture with the diced red peppers and toss well. Leave to cool completely, then cover and chill for at least 1 hour.
  8. Remove the salad from the fridge 30 minutes before serving. Add the capers and seasoning to taste, and toss the salad lightly. Line a serving bowl or platter with radicchio leaves and pile the salad on top. Sprinkle with the chopped parsley and serve at once, with lemon wedges for squeezing over each portion to taste.

Some more ideas

Use 125 g (4 1/2 oz) shelled cooked mussels, thawed if frozen, instead of fresh mussels. * Replace the mussels or scallops with 1 can tuna fish in brine, about 200 g, well drained. Like all oily fish, tuna is a good source of vitamin D, which the body uses to maintain calcium levels in the blood. * To increase the iron content, replace the scallops with clams, which contain at least three times as much iron. Cook the clams until their shells open, then remove them from the shells and add to the dressing.

Plus points

Shellfish are a good source of protein, both low in fat and calories. They contain useful amounts of many B vitamins, particularly B12. They are also a good source of the antioxidant selenium. Although shellfish contain high levels of cholesterol, it is not easily absorbed, and some studies suggest that eating shellfish can help to lower, not raise, blood cholesterol levels.

Each serving provides

A, B12, C, copper * E, niacin, iron, selenium

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