CHORIZO BAKED SEA SCALLOPS WITH BASIL CREAM SAUCE
Tupelo Honey Cafe
by Elizabeth Sims and Chef Brian Sonoskus
The saltiness of the chorizo paired with the sweetness of plump sea scallops creates a beautiful juxtaposition. This is a rich dish, one where you push back from the table and say "Whoo!" to paraphrase Roy Blount Jr. Look for scallops that are creamy color of a little pink and ask for dry-packed.
Makes 2 servings
• 1 cup fresh chorizo, removed from casing (2 sausages)
• 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
• 1 cup panko bread crumbs
• 2 tablespoons grated fresh Parmesan cheese
• 1/4 large Vidalia onion, thinly sliced
• 1 tablespoon canola oil
• 16 fresh jumbo sea scallops
• 2 teaspoons minced garlic
• 2 tablespoons thinly sliced roasted red bell pepper
• 2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
• 1/3 cup dry white wine (such as Sauvignon Blanc)
• 1/2 cup heavy cream
• 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Saute the chorizo over medium heat in a heavy dry medium saute pan or skillet for 4 to 5 minutes, or until cooked through and completely browned. Drain the excess oil and put the chorizo into a small bowl. Melt the butter in the pan. In a medium bowl, combine the bread crumbs, melted butter, chorizo, and cheese, mixing well. Set aside.
Preheat the oven's broiler.
In the pan, heat the onion over low heat until caramelized, stirring often, and set aside. Heat the canola oil in a medium saute pan or skillet over high heat and allow the oil to just begin to bubble. Add the scallops and cook for about 2 minutes, or until golden brown. Turn the scallops and cook for about 2 minutes longer, or until the scallops are golden brown on both sides. Add the garlic, bell pepper, caramelized onion, basil, and white wine and cook for about 2 minutes, or until the flavors are thoroughly combined. Add the cream and pepper and cook for about 3 minutes longer, or until the scallops are cooked through and firm to the touch.
Place the scallop mixture in an ovenproof shallow casserole dish. Finish by sprinkling the chorizo panko mixture over the scallops and placing them under the broiler for 2 to 4 minutes, until browned.