Thursday, August 27, 2009

Scallops for Heather

Once again, scallops over spinach over orzo. But different... this time with a white wine and Parmesan cream sauce, which was even better than it sounds. Also better than it looks-- it's hard to take a decent picture of mostly beige food in a dark room.

I need a better name for this, possibly, but I made this for my sister's birthday. We had a ridiculously fantastic bottle of champagne (it was a present) and I wanted to eat something equally spectacular but complimentary.

I'm trying to write this down from memory (I would've taken better notes if I'd known it would be so delicious), but I put it together with a recipe from Cooking Light (ha!) and the general idea of some sort of white wine sauce, which turned into a cream sauce just because I had heavy cream in the fridge. This sounds a little complicated, but if you have everything prepped before you start messing around the stove, it should take about 10 minutes.

Heather's birthday scallops
(serves 3-4)
1 lb. sea scallops (12-16; there should be 3-5 per person, depending on how big they are)
1/2 box of orzo
bag of spinach
a whole lot of butter
a bunch of olive oil
3 shallots, diced
2-3 cloves of garlic, diced
1 c. fresh parsley, snipped
1/4 c. heavy cream
1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 c. dry white wine

Boil water for pasta; start chopping everything into little bitty bits. Set scallops onto paper-towel lined plate; grind pepper and sprinkle a bit of coarse sea salt over the top. Flip them over; repeat.

Once your water is boiling and you have everything chopped and ready to go, start cooking pasta and heating heavy pan over medium heat, generously coated with a tablespoon or two of olive oil. When oil is shimmery, saute garlic, shallots, and half the parsley. Remove the mixture a small bowl. Add more olive oil and 1/2 T butter. Put half the scallops and remaining parsley in the pan; cook for 2 minutes and flip (tongs are extremely helpful.) Cook for another 2 minutes, then remove to plate and cover with foil to keep warm; repeat with the other half of the scallops. Do NOT overcook the scallops; it's easy to do and then they get all chewy.

Drain pasta; leave in colander for now. Deglaze the scallop pan with most of a glass of white wine; pour into empty pasta pot. Bring to a simmer; whisk in cheese and half of the shallot mixture. When cheese is melted, whisk in cream and another tablespoon of butter. Bring to a simmer; stir in pasta.

Meanwhile, put the rest of the shallot mixture, a splash of wine, and the spinach into the scallop pan. Stir until the spinach is all wilted. Add a little salt and pepper.

Plate with a layer of pasta, then a layer of spinach, then 3-5 scallops on top. Sprinkle with any parsley that's left and a couple of grinds of pepper. Serve immediately.

1 comment:

  1. mmmmmmmmmmm Made this for Nick on Friday night! Awesome, although I don't remember it being quite as good as when you cooked it... although maybe that's because I was missing a homemade Chocolate Stout Cake afterwards. Although we followed it up with thin mints and milk... which I'm pretty sure is almost as good.

    Two thumbs up on the recipe!