Seared Scallops and Veggies in Beurre Blanc Sauce
From Cooking Light
Today is a sad day. You see, it is the one year anniversary of John and I returning home from our honeymoon. I hate to brag, but our honeymoon was pretty much the world’s most awesome vacation – 7 nights in Fiji, then a 6 day tour up the coast of California, including stops in Santa Barbara, San Francisco and Napa Valley. So you can understand that there’s seemingly little to celebrate on the anniversary of the day it all came to an end. Nonetheless, we decided to do our best to pay tribute to the vacation of a lifetime by cooking one of the dishes we learned in a cooking lesson we took in Fiji.
This is not that dish. Apparently one of the secret ingredients in the fish curry we learned was tropical air or something, because our version just didn’t taste like we remembered. We had high hopes since the Fijian papaya soup we learned there and used as our very first blog post has been delicious time and time again. Oh well, on the plus side we made one of our all time favorite sea food recipes just last week, so that will have to take the fish curry’s place. It certainly embodies the best aspects of Fijian cooking anyhow – fresh produce, perfectly cooked fish and just the right touch of rich flavor. And best of all, it’s the perfect use for whatever late summer bounty you can scoop up at the farmers market in the next few weeks.
- 1/2 cup dry white wine (we used pinot grigio)
- 1/4 cup shallots, chopped
- 2 Tbsp chilled butter, cut into small pieces
- 1/2 tsp lemon zest
- 5/8 tsp salt, divided
- 1 zucchini, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1 yellow squash, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1 orange bell pepper, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1 red onion, cut into small wedges (I’d recommend leaving the “furry” looking end in tact so the wedges don’t fall apart)
- 2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
- 1 cup grape tomatoes
- 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 1/2 tsp pepper, divided
- 1 1/2 lb sea scallops (not the dinky bay scallops, these are the bigger guys)
- 1/4 cup small basil leaves (which we of course forgot, despite having a mutant basil plant on the deck that we desperately need to start using)
- Place a baking sheet covered with foil in the oven. Preheat the oven to 500 degrees, leaving the baking sheet in the oven while 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 out shallots using a sieve, saving wine. Discard shallots.
- Return reduced wine to pan and add chilled butter gradually, stirring with a whisk until smooth and emulsified (be patient, keep stirring, it will get there). Stir in lemon zest and 1/8 tsp salt. Cover and set aside.
- Combine zucchini, squash, bell pepper, onion and 1 tablespoon oil in a large bowl, tossing to coat.
- Carefully remove hot baking sheet from oven and arrange veggie mixture on the sheet. Return to oven for 3 minutes.
- Add tomatoes and garlic to the baking sheet and toss everything together gently. Return sheet to oven for 4 minutes.
- Remove veggies from oven and sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
- While vegetables cook heat a large cast iron skillet over high heat. Get that sucker really really hot.
- Pat scallops dry with paper towels and sprinkle with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
- Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to skillet, swirling to coat.
- Add scallops to pan and cook 1 minute on each side, or until seared and cooked to desired degree of doneness. We like them on the rare side, plus our pan was scorching hot, so we only cooked them about 30 seconds on each side.
- Divide vegetable mixture among plates, top with scallops and drizzle with beurre blanc sauce. Garnish with basil.