Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Foodie Files

I think I'd like to dedicate this summer to trying new on being a little braver and a little more wonder-filled (not to be confused with wonder-ful, though that would be acceptable outcome as well).  To that end, I tried two mostly unrelated but equally delightful activities this week: scuba diving lessons and pan searing scallops.  The scuba diving turned out to be way scarier than I was anticipating (though I'm so glad I did it and would love to do it again) and the scallops ended up being way easier than I expected, which was a great surprise.  The recipe below is a variation of this one from Fine Cooking and I couldn't possibly overstate how delicious it is!  If you're not sure about scallops might I suggest 1) joining me in my summer of trying new things and/or 2) Making this sauce for a white fish of some is so, so good!

1 lb. large sea scallops
1 TBS unsalted butter
1 TBS extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

For the sauce:
3 TBS unsalted butter, cut into six pieces
2 TBS finely diced shallot (1 medium shallot)
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
1/4 tsp finely grated lemon zest
Salt and pepper to taste
2 to 3 lemon wedges for serving

Rinse scallops under cold water and pat with paper towels...surface moisture will mess with the browning process so make sure they're nice and dry.  Heat a large pan over medium-high heat for 1 to 2 minutes, then add the oil and butter and heat until quite hot.  Pat the scallops dry once more and put them in the pan in a single layer. Season with salt and pepper and let sear undisturbed until one side is browned and crisp, 2 to 4 minutes.

Using tongs, turn the scallops and sear until the second side is well browned and the scallops are almost firm to the touch, 2 to 4 minutes.  Take the pan off the heat, transfer the scallops to a plate, and set them in a warm spot.  Let the pan cool for a minute before you make the sauce.

Return the pan to medium heat. Add a piece of the butter (1/2 TBS) and the shallots and sauté until the shallots begin to soften, about 1 minute. Add the wine and simmer until reduced by about half, another 1 to 2 minutes.  Add the herbs and lemon zest.  Reduce the heat to low, add the remaining butter, and whisk constantly until the butter melts into the sauce.

Return the scallops and any accumulated juices to the pan. Gently roll the scallops in the sauce to warm them through. Taste for salt and pepper and serve immediately with lemon wedges on the side to squeeze over the scallops.


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