Insalata di Pesce

Master Sommelier Pavle Milic, of FnB in Scottsdale, Arizona, gave us the inspiration for this seafood salad, which pairs beautifully with white wines. “I was 14 when I started working for the family business, a little joint called Franco’s Trattoria. We offered a seafood salad that was light, refreshing, and showcased what just a few simple ingredients can do. I love it with Scarpetta Frico Bianco, a blend of Friulano and Chardonnay from my pal (and Master Sommelier) Bobby Stuckey,” Milic says. Quickly poaching the mixed seafood gently cooks each piece to perfect doneness for tender, flaky bites. Choose a favorite olive oil here; its flavor permeates the whole dish and adds a savory vegetal flavor.

Insalata di Pesce
Photo: Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Torie Cox / Prop Styling by Claire Spollen
Active Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
25 mins


  • 10 cups water

  • 3 tablespoons plus 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided, plus more to taste

  • 8 ounces small to medium scallops

  • 8 ounces peeled and deveined raw medium to large shrimp

  • 8 ounces boneless, skinless swordfish or other firm, meaty fish, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

  • 3 celery stalks, finely chopped

  • 1 large shallot, finely chopped

  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more to taste

  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, plus more to taste

  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, plus more to taste

  • 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)

  • Butter lettuce or radicchio leaves and lemon wedges, for serving


  1. Fill a large bowl with ice water; set aside. Bring 10 cups water to a boil in a large saucepan over medium-high. Reduce heat to medium, and stir in 3 tablespoons salt. Working in batches, add scallops, shrimp, and fish to boiling water; cook to desired degree of doneness (45 seconds to 1 minute and 30 seconds for scallops, depending on size; 1 to 2 minutes for shrimp; 2 to 3 minutes for swordfish). Using a slotted spoon, transfer cooked seafood to prepared ice water; let stand 30 seconds to 1 minute. Transfer to a colander; drain well, and transfer to a medium bowl.

  2. Add celery, shallot, parsley, oil, lemon juice, black pepper, crushed red pepper (if using), and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt to seafood mixture; gently stir just until combined. Let stand at room temperature 5 minutes. Add additional salt, oil, lemon juice, or black pepper to taste. Serve seafood salad with lettuce or radicchio and lemon wedges.

Make Ahead

Seafood can be cooked up to 1 day ahead and stored in an airtight container in refrigerator.


Fresh halibut or tuna may be substituted for swordfish.

Suggested Pairing

Textural, flinty Friulano blend.

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