August 29, 2012

... Seared Sea Scallops with Summer Vegetables and Buerre Blanc

This is one of those brilliant recipes that looks and tastes pretty darn impressive, but is, for the most part, very simple to put together.  That's a win-win in my book.

There's a first time for everything and this was mine for searing scallops.  They didn't get quite as caramelized as I'd have liked, but they sure didn't lack in flavor.  Thanks for your help, Dad!

serves 4

1/2 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup chopped shallots
3 tablespoons chilled butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
5/8 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1 medium zucchini
1 medium yellow squash
1 orange bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 small red onion, cut into wedges
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 cup grape tomatoes
3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon black pepper, divided
1 1/2 pounds sea scallops
1/4 cup small basil leaves

Place a jelly-roll pan in the oven.  Preheat oven to 500 degrees (leave pan in oven as it preheats).

Combine wine and shallots in a small saucepan; bring to a boil.  Cook 6 minutes or until mixture is reduced to 2 tablespoons.  Strain through a sieve into a bowl; discard solids.  Return mixture to pan.  Gradually add butter, stirring with a whisk until smooth and emulsified.  Stir in rind and 1/8 teaspoon salt; keep warm.

Cut zucchini and yellow squash in half lengthwise.  Cut each half crosswise into 3 pieces; cut each piece lengthwise into 4 strips.  Combine zucchini, squash, bell pepper, onion, and 1 tablespoon oil in a large bowl; toss to coat.  Arrange vegetable mixture carefully onto preheated jelly-roll pan.  Bake at 500 degrees for 4 minutes or until vegetables are lightly browned.  Remove from oven; sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper.

While vegetables cook; heat a large cast-iron skillet over high heat.  Pat scallops dry with paper towels; sprinkle evenly with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper.  Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to pan; swirl to coat.  Add scallops to pan; cook 1 1/2 minutes on each side or until scallops are seared and desired degree of doneness.  Serve scallops with vegetable mixture and sauce; garnish with basil leaves.

Taylor's Notes:
Definitely take the time to prep your veggies first.  After they're ready and the sauce is made, the rest of the recipe moves pretty quickly.  Depending on how many vegetables you have or what size they are, they may take a little more time than 4 minutes.  We kept ours in the oven for about 15, but also had larger veggies and an additional pepper or two.  Keep an eye on them and start the scallops when you're about five or six minutes out.  It won't hurt the veggies to sit for a minute or two, but you definitely want the scallops to be hot.


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