Monday Mollusk

I invited a good friend to dinner Monday night.  That, in and of itself, is nothing out of the ordinary.  And, while I would prefer to cook for a crowd on the weekend–just for the sheer gluttony of being able to spend extended periods of time crafting the menu and browsing the grocery store–I really don’t mind cooking during the week.  Unless, of course,  my car is pinned beneath a branch…

A minor complication.

After a lengthy back and forth, I finally settled on cooking Scallops–mainly because I knew they had them at the one stop on my way home;  but also because my guest was from South Alabama and I knew cooking Shrimp for her would be like cooking Thanksgiving gravy for my grandmother.  Not a smart move.

For some unknown reason, I only get around to cooking Scallops a couple times a year–which is crazy considering they’re so easy to fix. Based on the amount of time they take, I should cook them every night.  But then I might turn into a Mollusk…and something about that word screams overweight with connecting freckles.  But maybe it’s just me.

Seared Scallops with a Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

1- 1 1/2 lbs Fresh Scallops

1 tbs Olive Oil

1 tbs Butter

3 Roasted Red Peppers

1 8 oz container Sour Cream

1 tbs fresh Parsley

dash of Cayenne

squeeze of Lemon Juice

Salt and Pepper to taste

Start by making the Red Pepper Sauce:  Place roasted red peppers in the jar of a blender (I used pre-roasted peppers because I was in something of a time crunch, but you can roast them yourself).  Pulse the peppers few times to break them up (I didn’t eviserate them b/c I wanted my sauce to have a little pulp in it).  Add the sour cream, cayenne, parsley, salt, pepper and a quick squeeze of lemon juice.  Blend until everything is mixed.  Adjust seasonings as needed.  Transfer to a small sauce pan and simmer over low heat.

For the scallops:

Clean the scallops removing the tough membrane from the side. Pat dry (wet scallops won’t sear).  Heat a large skillet with equal parts butter and olive oil until it is VERY HOT.  Place the scallops in the pan and cook for approximately 2-2 1/2 minutes on each side (sometimes it takes 3 minutes–you just have to watch them).  Remove the scallops from the pan and serve with fresh pasta and the red pepper sauce.


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