Something about scallops - especially the half-dollar-sized sea scallops - says luxury. Garnish with caviar (even if only domestic) and everyone will feel pampered. It is easy and quick to prepare. This pretty pasta fills the bill.
Tip --The best scallops are "dry" scallops, which haven't been treated with sodium tripolyphosphate, which makes them absorb water. But if your fish dealer only stocks "wet" scallops, no matter. Just be sure to pat them completely dry with paper towels before sauteing them.
Robin Mather Jenkins writes for the Chicago Tribune, which provided the recipe analysis.
Linguine With Caviar-Dappled Scallops in Lemon Cream
4 servings -- Total time: 35 minutes
1 pound linguine
1 1/4 pounds sea scallops
1/4 teaspoon salt
freshly ground pepper
1 teaspoon each: butter, vegetable oil
1 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup whipping cream
zest of 1/2 lemon, grated (divided use)
1 jar (1 ounce) salmon or golden roe
Heat a stockpot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Meanwhile, pat the scallops dry with paper towels. Season with the salt and pepper to taste.
Heat butter and oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add scallops, in 2 batches if necessary (do not crowd). Sear scallops, turning once, about 2 minutes each side. Remove scallops from pan; keep warm.
Pour excess fat from skillet. Add wine to skillet, stirring and scraping to remove browned bits. Heat to a boil; cook until wine is reduced by half. Stir in cream; reduce heat to low.
Add half of the lemon zest. Stir in reserved scallops. Cook, stirring occasionally, until flavors come together, about 4 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook linguine in the stockpot of boiling water according to manufacturer's directions; drain. Toss pasta with sauce; divide pasta among 4 plates. Garnish each with one-fourth of the caviar; sprinkle with remaining lemon zest.
Per serving: 650 calories, 12 grams fat, 5 grams saturated fat, 75 milligrams cholesterol, 89 grams carbohydrate, 42 grams protein, 394 milligrams sodium, 5 grams fiber
Linguine with caviar-dappled scallops in lemon cream
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