Friday, April 29, 2011

Sautéed scallops, chunky leeks with sorrel cream


Step 1: Chunky leeks
  • For 6 servings, trim 3 large leeks.  
  • Slice small cylinders a touch larger than your scallops, and rinse out grit under cold water.  Drain well.  
  • Melt 1 T butter in a medium pot (with a thick base) and add leeks, standing on end.  Crowd together in a single layer. 
  • Cover and soften over low heat about 20 minutes with a bay leaf and 4 sprigs fresh thyme, with no stirring (breaks up the shape of the leeks.)  
  • Add a couple spoons of water or dry white wine if necessary to keep from burning on pot bottom.  
  • Once leeks are tender and cooked, add 2 T. chopped fresh dill, chives or tarragon. (We used chives.)  
  • Optionally add 1/4 C cream.  Bring to simmer just before serving, thinning with a little water if necessary.  Season with sea salt

Step 2:  Sorrel cream
  • Finely mince 1 shallot and place in small pot with 1 T. melted butter.  
  • Soften over low heat, covered, 5 minutes with no browning.  
  • Add 1 C. heavy cream, 1 bay leaf, and bring to simmer.  
  • Meanwhile, slice finely about 20 fresh sorrel leaves and add to cream, simmering 5 minutes.  
  • Season and add a sprinkle of water if sauce is too thick.

Step 3:  Sautéed scallops
  • Clean and trim the scallops, 3 per person. 
  • Heat 1 T. butter in a non-stick pan until foaming stops, but before smoking, and place scallops in pan.  (Be careful to leave space between each scallop to allow for better browning)
  • Optionally, toss in the zest from one lemon during last minute of frying.   
  • Depending on size, sauté about 3 minutes first side to brown nicely, then 1/2 minute on the other side.  
  • Season with coarse sea salt, and a squeeze of lemon, and serve. 

Step 4 : Ready to eat
  • Arrange 3 leeks standing up on plate, faced by 3 scallops, and between the two rows, some sorrel cream. 
  • We dressed up some lamb's lettuce with olive oil to add some freshness to the plate.

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