Pan-seared scallops sit on top of rich pea puree, topped with crispy pancetta and Gremolata. A super easy dish, but tastes amazing and looks so elegant!
This recipe and I have a relationship.
I’ve been carrying it around with me for almost a year.
I think it came into my life two days after Paul lost his job. Yes, two days. I remember. Because I immediately knew that my food budget was about to get a kick in the stomach. And this recipe would have to wait.
So, for the past year, I’ve been moving it from folder to folder, room to room. Staring at it, dreaming about it. Even talking to myself about it.
I would pass by the fish counter at the market…just to look. I would pause. Then move on – walk down the cereal aisle. But of course that wasn’t comforting. I would make dishes with shrimp, hoping to suppress my scallop craving a while longer.
I was close to needing some serious consultation if I didn’t make it soon.
Well, we still won’t be going to New Zealand anytime in the near future (somehow I’m okay with this, though – I mean, how long is that flight? EEP.), or be able to replace my over-worn 1995 clothing ensembles, or even splurge on a new waffle maker. BUT, he’s brought in a couple of clients, affording me the luxury to buy scallops.
So, I made this recipe. I did. And you know what? It was divine.
The scallops were fresh and buttery, the pancetta was flavorful and salty, and the pea puree was sweet and gorgeous. It was absolutely, unequivocally marvelous.
And unlike so many meals that come with high expectations, only to disappoint…this dish goes in my Top 20 of all time. No joke.
I love a happy ending.
Other seafood recipes we love!
- 1/3 cup fresh chopped parsley
- 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
- 2 medium shallots , minced, divided
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil , divided
- 3 ounces diced pancetta
- 1 clove garlic , minced
- 2 cups frozen sweet peas , thawed
- 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- salt and pepper
- 12 large sea scallops , patted dry
In a small bowl combine the parsley, lemon zest, and half of the shallot. (This mixture is known as Gremolata.) Set aside.
In a large nonstick skillet, heat one tablespoon of the olive oil over medium-high. Saute the pancetta until crisp and cooked through, about 2-3 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer them to a plate and keep warm.
In the same skillet, over medium heat, saute the garlic and remaining shallot for about 2 minutes; add peas and chicken broth. Season with a little salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and let cook for about 5 minutes. Transfer mixture to a food processor or blender and puree to a smooth consistency. Cover and keep warm.
Wipe the skillet dry and heat the butter and remaining tablespoon olive oil over medium-high until very hot. Season the scallops with salt and pepper; add to the skillet and cook, flipping once, until golden on both sides and almost firm to the touch, about 3 minutes per side.
Spoon some of the pea puree onto individual servings plates, topped with the pancetta and scallops. Sprinkle a little of the Gremolata on top and serve immediately.
adapted from Fine Cooking