The Atacama Dessert in Chile is probably one of the most memorable places that I have ever traveled. The dusty dessert town of San Pedro de Atacama is a little over 8000 feet elevation and the surrounding excursions only get higher. It is one of the highest, driest, largest desserts in the world and yes there are a few sand dunes, but mostly incredible rock formations, geysers and salt lakes with resident pink flamingoes. Our hotel served a refreshing sashimi salad one day and it gave me the inspiration for this salad. Wild salmon season will soon be over so I am making the most of it while I can. The bright salmon paired with white scallops and green avocados looks gorgeous. The medallions are sliced so thinly that you will forget you are eating raw fish(if that is a problem).
3/4 pound fresh wild salmon
1/4 pound large scallops
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon capers
2 cups of torn lettuce leaves
1 cup of cubed avocado
1. Remove the bones. Slice the salmon filet very thinly.(about 1/2 inch)
2. Place a piece of plastic wrap on a cutting board and put the thin slices of salmon on top, slightly overlapping and lightly pound the pieces together to form a sheet of salmon about 7 inches by 7 inches. ( Put a piece of plastic over the salmon before pounding.)
3. Trim the scallops so they can form a center layer on the salmon and place them in the middle of the salmon sheet. If they are too large you can just slice them in half.
4. Wrap the salmon as tightly as you can around the scallop middle using the plastic wrap.(like wrapping a sushi role) When the wrap is completed, put the wrapped salmon in the freezer. This will make it easy to thinly slice. The salmon roll will be about 2 1/2 inches in diameter.
6. Zest the lemon, squeeze the juice and mix with the mustard and olive oil.
7. Rinse the capers. Tear the lettuce. Cube the avocado.
8 Remove the frozen salmon log from the freezer and with a very sharp knive cut very thin medallions.
9. Drizzle some of the dressing around the plate. Arrange the medallions in a circle and put some lettuce and avocado cubes in the center.
10. Drizzle more dressing on the top of the salmon and the salad in the middle.
11. Scatter capers over the salad.
12. Grind some black pepper over everything.