scallop risotto

April 12, 2011 § Leave a comment

this is pretty delicious.

as a note: i hate baked scallops, and it turns out i’m not a huge fan of sauteed scallops, either. next time i would (1) follow the recipe until the add-the-scallops part (2) sautee 1/8-1/4c. shallots in 1-2T butter over medium-high heat until the shallots are soft and translucent. I’d then crank up the heat to high and and add in the scallops to pan-sear (appx 2 mins. per side, until scallops are opaque and outside is a pretty caramel brown), and serve on top of the risotto. this just makes for a better tasting scallop. it just does.

as another note: this dish could also be made with shrimp (peeled and deveined, natch). and, actually, probably with any standard white fish (i’d probably just pan sear as above).

2c vegetable broth (i suppose you could also use chicken broth, if you’re being all insisty).
one 8oz bottle clam juice
2T butter
1/4 c. chopped shallots
1/2 c. uncooked arborio rice (note: for those of you who are not carb addicts: 1. we will never be real friends 2. that’s risotto rice).
1/8t. saffron threads, crushed (christ on a crutch, that stuff is expensive. if you’re not feeling like shelling out the big bucks, i’d just leave it out. i don’t really think it added *that* much flavor. i’ve also heard you can also sub in a pinch of tumeric or paella powder. if anyone tries it, let me know how it turns out!)
1T fresh lemon juice
1/2c grape tomatoes, halved
8oz scallops
2T whipping cream
chopped fresh parsley for garnish (optional)

how-to:
bring broth and clam juice to a simmer in a medium saucepan. do not boil. keep warm over low heat.

melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. add shallots and cook until tender, appx. 2 mins. add rice and saffron to pan, cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. and it’s risotto, so this is one of those instances where stirring constantly means STIRRING CONSTANTLY. stir in 1/2 c. broth mixture until fully absorbed by the rice. stir, stir, stir. continue to add 1/2 cups of broth, waiting until each is absorbed by the rice before adding more. still stirring. (give yourself 15 mins or so).

stir in tomatoes, cook 1 minute. stir in scallops; cook appx 4 minutes until opaque. (see notes on scallops, below).

remove from heat, stir in cream, sprinkle with parsley if desired.

scallop notes:
1. if you live in MSP, you should probably just suck it up, drive to south, and buy your scallops from coastal seafoods. they are awesome, and in the know when it comes to all-things-seafood.
2. if at all possible, you’ll want to buy “dry” scallops. “dry” means “not treated with sodium tripolyphosphate.” which is good. i promise.
3. candidly, bycatch is a major problem with scallops, so please consider buying scallops farmed on suspended lines.
4. check your scallops before you cook with them. you may need to remove the muscle — the small, fleshy part near the edge of the scallop.
5. general scallop prep tip: prepare your scallops by scoring them hashtag style on both sides with a sharp knife. This will help the scallops absorb the flavors of your sauce.

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