When I make this, I try to get my hands on the best diver-caught scallops from Scotland. They’re at their best when the water is really cold, and if there’s a good fishmonger near you they should be able to track them down.
The richness of the black pudding works really well with the clean taste of the scallops. And, if you haven’t eaten the roe (the orange bit on the scallop) before, give it a go. Just carefully trim them off the scallops then fry them for some added tastiness!
Preheat your oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas mark 4. Tear the ciabatta into rough pieces and place in a baking tray. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Pop in the oven and cook for 10 minutes until you’ve got crispy, golden croutons.
Put all the salad leaves in a big bowl. Finely slice the celery at an angle and add it to the bowl of salad with the celery leaves.
Heat a frying pan on a medium heat. Split the black puddings lengthways, tear them open, crumble into the frying pan and fry until crispy. Don’t be scared if it looks very black and almost burnt - trust me, it will taste delicious. Once ready, remove to a plate and keep warm.
Carefully slice the scallops in half so you have 2 rounds from each scallop and score them on one side with a little criss-cross. Season with a little salt and pepper and a sprinkling of lemon zest. Sear for a minute in a frying pan, scored-side down, with a touch of olive oil, and don’t be tempted to touch them! Add the roe to the pan now, too. After a minute, check the underside, and continue to fry until lovely and caramelised. Turn them over and allow the other side to do the same. Be careful not to overcook them though, a minute or so on each side is all they need.
Arrange the salad leaves on a large platter, then nestle the lovely scallops in among them. Sprinkle over that wonderful, crispy black pudding and the croutons. Snip the salad cress over the top, and finish with a good squeeze of lemon juice and a drizzle of olive oil. What an amazing treat!