Thursday, March 25, 2010

Scallops and Pasta

I have a new infatuation. I've known about The Pioneer Woman for quite a while. Heck, I even have a printed copy of her Penne a la Betsy included in my Tastebook. And her cooking site held the answer when I needed to figure out what on earth to make with the load of turnips that showed up from the CSA last year (answer = turnip gratin!) But, I had never actually read anything on her blog that was not related to cooking. Until this week.
First a word of caution, don't start reading this unless you have an hour or two of uninterrupted time carved out. Because you won't want to stop. It's the real life story in blog form (to be published in a book next year, and already optioned for a movie!) of how she met her husband. I think this reading is probably for the ladies, but guys could definitely take some pointers on how to make your woman feel... special.
All of this has nothing to do with Scallops and Pasta. Except for the fact that I stumbled across this recipe when I was browsing around her site. And when I saw this I immediately craved it, even though I don't have a cast iron pan to make that beautiful sear. Then I went to my favorite grocery store they had giant sea scallops on sale. Score.
My kids and I love seafood. With a husband out of town (still) we are enjoying it more often than not these days. And yes, I cook like this for myself and two small kids on a Wednesday. We're worth it.

Scallops and Pasta
only slightly tweaked from Scallops 'n Pasta

1/3 lb pasta
1 lb (about 10-12) whole giant or jumbo sea scallops
1 Tablespoon oilve oil
1 Tablespoon butter
1 small onion, finely diced
1 cup chopped tomato
1 cup white wine or stock (chicken or seafood)
a few tablespoons of parsley, chopped
freshly squeezed lemon juice
salt and pepper

1. Cook the pasta in salted water per the instructions on the box. Drain and set aside.

2. Dice onion and tomato. Chop parsely. Use paper towels to pat the scallops until they are very dry. (See picture above to find the one scallop which was not thoroughly dried.)Season with salt and pepper on both sides.

3. Heat a large frying pan or saute pan over high heat. When hot, swirl in the olive oil. Add the scallops to the pan, not touching so that they can sear properly. Cook for 2 minutes without touching then flip and cook for another 1-2 minutes until cooked through. Remove to a plate.

4. Turn the heat to low. Add the butter and the onion. Saute for 3-4 minutes then add the tomatoes.

5. Turn the heat to high and add in the white wine. Use spatula to scrape up bits in the bottom of the pan while it is bubbling. Add cooked pasta, throw in the parsley and stir well to let the sauce coat the pasta. Top with the seared scallops.

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