Pan-Seared Sea Scallops with Saffron Capellini

by Michael on September 17, 2014

This is a great appetizer recipe for small dinner parties as it is elegant, delicious and easy to adjust for the number of guests. When shopping for scallops, I always try to get dry-pack sea scallops. If you must buy frozen scallops, then make sure the only ingredient on the label listed on the label is scallops. I always sear my scallops in a heavy duty steel or cast iron pan

The Scallops

1 Tbsp olive oil
sea scallops, one per person
2 Tbsp Capers
2 cloves garlic, sliced paper thin
Garnishing salt (ie. black salt or Pink Himalayan sea salt)
fresh ground pepper

Heat olive oil in a heavy-bottomed steel or cast iron pan over high heat. Rinse and pat the scallops dry and season with salt. Sear the scallops on one side until golden brown about 1-2 minutes. Do not try to move the scallops until they are ready to turn over or you will lose the crust. If they get stuck on the pan, add a pat of butter and shake lightly. When golden brown, flip them over and Sear the other side until golden brown. Add the capers and garlic and sauté until the galic is just starting to turn color approximately 1 minutes. Remove the scallops from the pan and garnish each scallop with a pinch of salt and pepper.

The Capellini
½ lb. good quality dried Capellini pasta
6 cups Saffron Nagé cooking liquid (recipe below)
1 Tbsp butter
salt and pepper

Bring the Nage cooking liquid to a boil and cook the pasta according to the manufacturer’s directions. Remove the pasta to a sauté pan. Add butter to pasta and toss. Serve scallops on top of pasta for each guest.

Note: The Nagé can be cooled and frozen and used for other sauces or applications.
8 cups water
1 cup clam broth
1 onion, peeled and chopped
1 celery stick, sliced
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
4 cloves garlic
2 Bay leaves
6 stalks fresh thyme
parsley stems just use the stems YES that is where most of the flavor is
1 gram Saffron, 1 good pinch. (cannot tell you in teaspoon measurement because it is like threads.
Bring water and clam broth to a boil
Add the rest of the ingredients except Saffron.
Bring back to boil. Simmer gently for 45 minutes.
Strain the stock through a fine sieve into a clean bowl and return to heat.
Add Saffron.
Bring to a hard boil for 10 minutes or until reduced by about 1/3.

This is the cooking liquid or Nage for the pasta.

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