I love scallops. And I love tasting spoons. And scallops look so pretty in tasting spoons. I’ve been in love with this combination since I ordered it a few years ago at a party we had for the husband’s mom. I’ve been playing with various combinations of ingredients ever since.
I served the pistachio-crusted scallops at a progressive dinner the other day. A friend and I co-hosted a six-course tasting menu for some of the progressive guests. The scallops I bought from Wegmans were ginormous, so I cut them in half before serving them in the spoons. But, they STILL were too big to eat from the spoon, so I had my guests just dump them from the spoon into a plate and eat them with forks. Not as elegant as I had hoped, but everyone loved them, and the pile of remaining scallop halves quickly disappeared as well.
Pistachio-Crusted Scallop in a Tasting Spoon with Honey Tangerine Vinaigrette
- Honey Tangerine Vinaigrette (recipe below)
- 6 sea scallops
- salt and pepper
- 1 cup pistachios, shelled
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 Tbsp butter
Dry the scallops completely using paper towels. Sprinkle salt and pepper all over.
Grind up the pistachios into fine crumbs. Add some salt and pepper if desired. Combine half of the ground pistachios with softened, unsalted butter and form into small patties, about the size of a scallop. Refrigerate these patties for 15 minutes or more.
Put remaining ground pistachios into a shallow bowl. Dip each end of the scallops into the pistachio crumbs, pressing hard to make them stick.
Heat olive oil and butter in a saute pan so it is VERY hot. Add scallops, one pistachio end down, and fry for about 3 minutes until browned. Turn scallop over and repeat on the other side. While it's cooking, place a pat of pistachio butter on the top of the scallop and press down using the back of a spatula. Butter should start to melt while cooking the scallop. Remove from heat.
Pour about 1 teaspoon of the vinaigrette into each spoon. Place a seared scallop into the vinaigrette (use half or quarter of a scallop if they are large).
- 2 honey tangerines, juiced
- 1 Tbsp chopped shallot
- 1 Tbsp honey
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper
Combine the tangerine juice, chopped shallot and honey in a tall plastic cup. Mix using a stick blender. Gradually drizzle in the olive oil while blending. Add salt and pepper to taste.