Seared Scallops with Lemony Sauce

Scallops are so summery, but nothing says you can’t have them amidst a forthcoming nor’easter as well.  There were some beauties in the seafood department that needed to fulfill their destiny of getting in my belly!  And the perfect sear is not something to fear!

I had some lemon curd and champagne on hand and wanted to recreate a sauce I made not long ago that I thought would be great on the scallops.  Here’s what you need to pull this off:

Don’t hesitate to ask the folks at the seafood counter for the specific scallops you want, or provide a good description.  They tell me they don’t mind.  So I asked for eight fat ones all about the same size.  Done!  Getting a good sear on a scallop is actually not too tough.  In fact, just a few tricks will have your scallops seared like a quasi-pro.  First, (trick one) make sure to pat them dry.


Then a little bit of pepper and a tiny bit of salt on each side.


While they dry, assemble your sauce with three ingredients – either these three or something similar.  I used champagne, lemon curd, and passion fruit white balsamic vinegar, but you can see how each of these items could be interchangeable (i.e. White wine for champagne, marmalade or honey in exchange for lemon curd, you get the idea).


Mix together the amount of each you’d like for consistency, you don’t need much as this is just spooned over the scallops after they’re done, so maybe a total of 1/2 a cup.


Over to the nice and dry scallops…a paper towel pat down will do it just fine.  Get the pan nice and hot, then add the herbed butter (regular butter is fine too) til it bubbles and just starts to brown (trick two).



Once the butter bubbles and starts to brown, add the scallops in a clockwise pattern so you know which one you put in first.  This is how I know the order in which to turn them (trick three).  Let them sear for approximate 2 minutes.


Once you see the bottoms getting nice and dark brown, start turning over in the rotation and sear the other side for the same amount of time.


Check out those beauties!  It’s so satisfying to see the sear on the scallops and know that you nailed it.  Once you’ve gotten the sear, you can do a quick and gentle toss just to get a few more bits of brown butter on them, just for a second.

Plate with anything you’d like, for instance, some lite veg.  Then spoon the sauce over the scallops generously!


This came out so good, I was very proud!  Go on and try it, I know you’ll impress yourself.  And self-impressing is great because we are each our own harshest critic!

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