7/31/08

Grilled Bacon Wrapped Scallops with Grilled Zucchini and Potatoes

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Try not to be completely shocked out of your minds... but I don't really have anything to post at the moment.

*shrieks!*

Well, honestly, I have a few things saved in my "blog pics" folder that I made in the past and none of them were calling out to me like, "Hey, look at me! I'm so awesome! Post me!" A couple others are really AWESOME recipes, but they were cooked by Mark and only he can truly tell you what the recipe is. Sometime in the future when he's got more than three seconds to spare, I'll try to get him to post them.

So, in the meantime, I thought I'd post a picture of a dinner Mark recently made for me. It was a couple weeks ago and he said that he really wanted to grill some bacon wrapped scallops. Both of us, as I'm sure most everyone does, get cravings for very specific things from time to time and that was what he wanted at that time. As soon as I heard "bacon wrapped..." I was on board. Yeah, basically any word or words could have followed the phrase "bacon wrapped" and I'd probably still reply with, "well... yeah I'm sure it'll still be good". Be as gross as you'd like while imagining that. :-)

Anyway, I don't really have a recipe to post for this one because there is really nothing to it. The scallops were thawed, then dressed with extra virgin olive oil and seasoned with salt and pepper. Then they are each wrapped in bacon and skewered.

flat skewers

We got these really cool Steven Raichlen flat skewers and they are the best thing EVER! Food doesn't slide or turn around on these skewers; they keep the food nicely in place. They're very heavy duty, too, which is nice since skewers are often hunks o' junk.

The zucchini was dressed the same as the scallops and skewered up as well. The potatoes were just small red potatoes cut into quarters, dressed with extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper, and herbs de provence, then popped into our little toaster oven on 400 degrees until the potatoes were golden brown on the outside. Toss them once in the middle of their cooking time to get them browned on all sides.

That's about it! Nothin' to it and you end up with a plate of delicious grilled food like this. Ladies... I AM a lucky girl. If you're currently a single gal, get yourself a man that can cook. Even if you're an awesome cook and love to cook all the time, do it anyway. On those days when you just don't feel like cooking, or on those days when he really just DOES, you will get ideas you never thought of off of your cooking-guy; you'll get spoiled with great cooking, too.

Love you, Mark!

hot sexy mark

7/28/08

Restaurant Review: Zocalo Mexican Grill and Tequileria

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So after the Indians game on Sunday, Mark and I decided to go to Zocalo Mexican Grill and Tequileria, a Mexican restaurant located on E. 4th Street in Cleveland. The E. 4th district of Cleveland is one of the most up and coming parts of the city right now, and certainly my favorite part of the city at this time. It is so nicely done; the twinkle lights over-head, the brick street meant only for pedestrians, the intimate collection of good, diverse restaurants (one being Iron Chef Michael Symon's Lola), casual bars, and a great musical venue, The House of Blues. It's just a wonderful area of the city and one I'm very proud to say is in my hometown.

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Zocalo is this district's Mexican food offering. Mark and I have only eaten there a couple times and both times we ordered off of their bar menu since our visits were pretty late at night. I think once we had burritos and another time quesadillas. They were good, especially for late night food. We kept saying we really wanted to go there for a sit-down dinner and really get a taste of their dinner menu. Plus, it was recently announced that Aaron Sanchez, of the NYC restaurant Paladar Latino Food and Drink and "The Next Iron Chef" fame, has signed on as consulting chef at Zocalo. After hearing that, we were even more excited to eat there.

As you can see, it's a beautiful restaurant. It's cool, casual, and fun. I love everything about how this place looks.

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Well, we ate there... after drinking a few beers at the game... and even then it wasn't all that great. It wasn't BAD, but it definitely fell way short of my expectations. I was bummed, too, because I was REALLY in the mood for a good Mexican meal since it's one of my most favorite cuisines. Well, let me just tell you what we had and then you'll understand...

We started out with margaritas, which were good; very good in fact. Mine featured Patron Silver and Mark had a Wabo Rita, which he liked as well.

Next, we moved on to the appetizers. As I mentioned before, we had drank a few beers before coming to this restaurant, so of course I FORGOT to take pictures of the dang appetizers! Anyway, we started with the Sopes, which are corn tarts filled with pureed beans, tomatillo avocado salsa and shaved cotija cheese. The topping was fresh and good, with big flavors of lime and cilantro. However, the corn tart crust was quite dry. The flavor was good, but it was dry.

I WILL say that the homemade tortilla chips were very good, crispy, and just salty enough. They were served with complimentary salsa and we had our choice of three (which of course we asked to try all three). There was a mild that was just like a salsa fresca and it was very good, very fresh tasting. The next one was medium heat and was made with smoked ancho chile peppers. It did have a slight smokey flavor and was also good. The hot salsa was made with habanero peppers and was SO good. It was pretty freakin' hot, but not TOO hot. The flavor was everything I wanted it to be with lots of different layers of deliciousness. We were both happy with the salsas.

The next appetizer we had was the Empanadas De Carnitas. Now, I LOVE empanadas, so I was again excited. The filling was good; a little cheese and the pork was juicy and good. However, again the outer crust was dry.

Ok, so on to the dinner entrees. I ordered a 2 item combination with a beef tamale and a chile relleno stuffed with cheese and beef picadillo. I finally remembered that I brought the camera at this point in time! Of course, I didn't remember until I had taken my first bite of the chile relleno, so I apologize for the dirty silverware in the picture. Hey, I never said I was a professional restaurant reviewer!

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The chile relleno was good. I really liked it. It was hot in temperature (due to being served in a cast iron pan) and in spice (which I loved). The pepper was a bit charred and tender. I had no problem with that part of the dish.

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Now, let us talk about the tamale. Now, you haven't seen my version of tamales just yet, but I have made them a few times in the past and as Mark will tell you, they usually come out pretty darn good. I've also eaten them in Mexico, as well as some very fine Chicago and NYC restaurants. So I would say at this point in my life, I know a thing or two about tamales. The tamale on my plate last night was not what I was hoping for. Guess what? It was DRY. It's a bit beyond me how a food that is cooked by steaming can possibly be dry when served, but it was. The dish was also served with a side of Mexican rice and refried beans. The rice was pretty good; it had a good spice and I liked the addition of the corn. Other than that, it was pretty average. The refried beans were... oh yeah, DRY. Oh, and pasty, and a bit tasteless. There's a reason why I don't eat refried beans at Taco Bell, and these beans kind of reminded me of that reason... just sayin'.

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Mark got the Jalisco Steak, which is flat iron steak marinated in Aarón's Adobo served with rajas and seasonal vegetables, topped with spicy chipotle sauce and salsa verde. Mark ordered his steak medium-rare and instead he got rare. That wasn't a huge deal, because he's certainly not afraid of a little bloody steak. However, for this cut of steak, he mentioned that he would have preferred it to have been cooked as ordered. I had a bite of it myself and I thought the vegetables of the dish were very good. They had a bright, fresh taste. The steak tasted good, but didn't stand out in the bite I had. Mark will have to elaborate more when he gets a chance.

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We decided against dessert because by that time, we were just tired and ready to go home. I will say that the service was excellent. Our waitress was very nice and attentive.

I know that Aaron Sanchez JUST began helping this restaurant revamp their menu, but I'm really hoping that he pays them another visit soon. I've never eaten at his restaurant in NYC and I realize that he is merely consulting on Zocalo's menu, but if I were him and I had put my name on this menu, I would rush back to this restaurant quickly. We plan to come back after a little while has passed to see if they are able to fix the things that need to be fixed. I still have hope, although I don't all together know why. Maybe it's just my optimism or the fact that I REALLY want them to be a good Mexican restaurant. Please?

Have any of you eaten there? What did YOU think?

7/26/08

Swiss Chard and Sweet Pea Manicotti

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I know... it's July. It's LATE July. And here I am posting a creamy, cheesy, baked pasta dish. Well, I actually made this probably over a month ago, but I hadn't gotten around to posting it until now. Also, I don't necessarily think that there are certain times that you should eat ANY food. It's more what you're in the mood for at the time. PLUS, this manicotti is loaded with veggies! What's more summery than that? haha... Well, whether you make this now, or bookmark this page so you can make it in the fall, please make this dish. It's GOOD GOOD GOOD! The swiss chard, peas, and onions really give the filling a depth of flavor and set it way apart from the ho-hum ricotta only version.

This was also the very best picture I could get of this pasta. It's hard making a baked pasta look pretty, but I did my best. :-)

So how do you make it? Well, let me tell you...

Start with some beautiful swiss chard. This is actually the first time I've ever worked with this green. I'm sure I've eaten it before, but I've never bought it, taken it home, and cooked it for myself. I loved how HUGE the leaves were. They were a very dark and vibrant green; very pretty.

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Using kitchen scissors or a knife, remove the leaves from the stems of the chard. Discard the stems. Chop the leaves into 1-inch pieces. In a large nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute longer.

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Add the chard and cook, stirring constantly, until wilted, about 2 minutes.

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See how much the swiss chard wilts?

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Place the ricotta cheese, peas, mozzarella cheese, Parmesan cheese, basil, salt, and pepper in the bowl of a food processor. Add the cooled chard mixture and blend until smooth.

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Yum! I had to stop myself from eating this whole bowl with just a spoon!

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Spoon the mixture into a prepared pastry bag, (or just do what I did and take a Ziplock plastic bag, fill it with the mixture, zip the bag closed, hold it like a pastry bag and snip off one of the corners, allowing you to squirt the filling out), and fill each manicotti shell with the filling. Place the stuffed manicotti in the prepared baking dish.

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Next, make the Fontina Fonduta sauce. In a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan, bring milk and cream to a simmer, over medium heat. Reduce heat to low. Add the fontina cheese and cook, stirring constantly, until the cheese is melted and the mixture is smooth. Remove the pan from the heat. Stir in the Parmesan cheese and basil.

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Pour the sauce over the stuffed manicotti. I know... it looks like a lot. Trust me, the pasta soaks it all up.

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Sprinkle with the mozzarella cheese. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until the top is golden. Cool for 5 minutes before serving.

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One of the most beautiful things in life is... when cheese does THIS.

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Let the pasta sit for about 10 minutes before you serve it so the sauce, cheese, filling, etc., doesn't run all over the place when you try and put it on the plate. Like I said, this was really good and I highly suggest making it when you're in the mood for some comfort food. And, of course, it was even better the next day.



Swiss Chard and Sweet Pea Manicotti
Recipe courtesy Giada De Laurentiis, 2008
Show: Everyday Italian
Episode: Pasta for Every Season


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Butter, for greasing the pan
12 manicotti or cannelloni pasta shells

Filling
1 head (about 12 ounces) red or white Swiss chard
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (15-ounce) container whole milk ricotta cheese
3/4 cup frozen petite peas, thawed
1 cup shredded mozzarella (4 ounces)
3/4 cup grated Parmesan (2 ounces)
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

Fontina Fonduta Sauce
3/4 cup whole milk
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
3 cups (6 ounces) fontina cheese, grated
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves
1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) mozzarella, shredded

Special Equipment (optional): a pastry bag fitted with a large plain tip (recommended: Ateco #7) <-- you can just use a ziplock bag, fill it, and snip one of the corners off; whalla! Your own pastry bag!


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Grease a 13 by 9-inch glass baking dish liberally with butter.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 6 to 8 minutes. Drain the pasta and rinse with cold water. Set aside.


For the Filling:

Using kitchen scissors or a knife, remove the leaves from the stems of the chard. Discard the stems. Chop the leaves into 1-inch pieces. In a large nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute longer. Add the chard and cook, stirring constantly, until wilted, about 2 minutes. Allow the mixture to cool slightly. Place the ricotta cheese, peas, mozzarella cheese, Parmesan cheese, basil, salt, and pepper in the bowl of a food processor. Add the cooled chard mixture and blend until smooth. Spoon the mixture into the prepared pastry bag and fill each manicotti shell with the filling. Place the stuffed manicotti in the prepared baking dish.

For the Fontina Fonduta Sauce:

In a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan, bring milk and cream to a simmer, over medium heat. Reduce heat to low. Add the fontina cheese and cook, stirring constantly, until the cheese is melted and the mixture is smooth. Remove the pan from the heat. Stir in the Parmesan cheese and basil.

Pour the sauce over the stuffed manicotti and sprinkle with the mozzarella cheese. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until the top is golden. Cool for 5 minutes before serving.

7/20/08

Southwestern Style Pasta Salad

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As I'm typing this post, I'm eating some of this delicious pasta salad. I made this salad for Mark on Saturday because he had a craving for a good pasta salad. He went on to say that he didn't want the same old Italian dressing version he's had 100 times and he didn't want a version with mayo in it since he would be working outside all day and wanted to keep it light.

He started listing off ingredients like fresh squeezed lime juice, cilantro, poblano peppers, olives... and then asked me to "wing it". So, I hit the internet for some direction first since I'm not that experienced yet with making vinaigrettes without a recipe. However, after about 15 minutes of surfing, I didn't find anything resembling what I was looking for. So, I decided to listen to Mark and "wing it".

Lucky for us both, the final product was a success and as I sit here and eat it now, I can tell you that it's tasty, refreshing, it has a little back-of-the-throat kick, it's a little creamy from the avocado and cotija cheese, and it's got lots of crunch from all the veggies. Mark said it was just what he was looking for, but that I shouldn't break my arm patting myself on the back. haha... Isn't he sweet?

So here it is folks, another FOODIE original:

Start by cooking your desired pasta shapes according to package directions. Be sure to shock the pasta in cold water when it's done to stop the cooking process so the pasta stays firm and doesn't get mushy when mixed with everything else. Then toss the pasta with some drizzled olive oil so it doesn't stick together. I decided to use farfalle (a.k.a. bow ties) from Barilla's new line of Piccolini pastas.

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Now, it's time to chop away. I liked making this salad because I love chopping up ingredients. Seriously, I could do it all day. I would be happy as a clam working as a sous chef that just did food prep all day, I really would. My knife skills have got to be bangin' by now. haha... Anyway, I chopped up the following veggies: poblano peppers, orange bell pepper, red onion, celery, jalapeno, black olives, and cilantro. Here's just a few of those ingredients in all their colorful glory:

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Shoot, even the garbage bowl was pretty for this dish:

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Ok, then it was time to figure out the chili-lime vinaigrette. I wasn't sure how I was going to make it, and then I asked myself, "What would Bobby Flay do?" Seriously, I did. Then I remembered that he loves ancho chili powder and lime juice together and kind of went from there. I started by juicing two limes into a bowl, which produced 1/4 cup of juice. I then whisked in 2 tablespoons of rice vinegar, 2 teaspoons cumin, 2 teaspoons ancho chili powder, 1 large minced jalapeno, 2 large minced garlic cloves, a 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil, and sea salt and black pepper to taste. It produced the mixture you see here:

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Now, let's just take a step back for a second and talk about what happens when I decide to create a recipe from my head. Well, this is what happens to my kitchen. This is just a small corner of my kitchen, but it's where I really like to do my chopping because I can chop along with Rachael Ray, Ina Garten, Guy Fieri, Giada, etc. and I just really enjoy it. I love the Food Network - guilty as charged. So anyway, this is what my creative culinary mind produces in the kitchen... a mess.

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Ok, back to the pasta salad...

So the next step is to now dice up your avocado. You want to wait until now because avocado likes to turn brown as soon as it can, so you want to have the citrusy vinaigrette made and ready to mix it together with all the ingredients, including the avocado. The citrus will stop the oxidation of the avocado, preserving it's pretty green color and fresh taste. So dice up that beautiful avocado:

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Then, grab your cotija cheese, 8 oz., and chop it all up into tiny crumbly cubes. This cheese is so good. It's crumbly and fresh with a light salty flavor. It's got the texture of feta, but a little drier and the flavor is just fresh. It's hard to describe, but Bobby Flay loves it, so I do too. :-)

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Now, mix everything together and pour the vinaigrette all over everything. Make sure you vigorously whisk the vinaigrette right before you pour it onto the pasta salad so all the ingredients meld together. Now just toss your pasta salad, then season with more sea salt and pepper until it tastes good to you. Don't forget to throw in that chopped cilantro! Yum!

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So whip this pasta salad up for your next cookout and hey, let me know if everyone liked it!




Southwestern Style Pasta Salad
by Tara

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Salad ingredients:
1 lb. pasta of your choice (I suggest tiny farfalle pasta), cooked then shocked in cold water and tossed in olive oil
2 poblano peppers, seeded and finely diced
1 orange bell pepper, seeded and finely diced
1 quarter of a red onion, finely diced
2 celery stalks from the middle of the bunch, finely diced
Handful of black olives, diced
8 oz. block of Cotija cheese, finely diced or crumbled
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
salt and pepper to taste
1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and finely diced

Vinaigrette ingredients:
2 limes, juiced (or 1/4 cup lime juice)
2 tblsp rice vinegar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tspn cumin
2 tspn ancho chili powder
2 garlic cloves, minced
large jalapeno (or 2 small ones), seeded and finely diced
salt and pepper to taste

Procedure:
Cook pasta according to package directions. When pasta is done, immediately shock it in cold water. Then, drain the pasta and, in a large bowl, toss it in some drizzled olive oil so it doesn't stick together.

Next, chop all the salad ingredients except for the avocado. Combine the salad ingredients with the pasta.

Now, make the vinaigrette. Simply combine all the vinaigrette ingredients together and whisk vigorously. Pour the vinaigrette over the pasta mixture and toss together.

Finally, peel, pit, and finely chop the avocado and add it to the pasta salad, tossing again. Season the pasta salad with salt and pepper to taste, then cover and refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.

7/19/08

Pasta with Herbed Clam Sauce

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Keeping with the seafood theme, I wanted to share another really easy, but really delicious recipe that's great to serve in the summertime. The easy part is it can be made with things already found in your pantry, so you can whip it up in no time during the week or on the weekend. It's creamy and delicious (without ANY added cream!) and if you love pasta and clams, you'll LOVE this dish. Sorry Mel, you won't be able to eat this, but stay tuned... I've got an AWESOME Southwestern Style Pasta Salad coming up next that you can gobble up!

This recipe was found at Epicurious.com and is from the July 1993 issue of Gourmet magazine. Huh... I was enjoying my summer before my senior year in high school when this recipe came out. I'm sure I would have loved it back then, too. I was a seafood FREAK!

Ok, so to make this simple and just-what-you-want (if you're me) dish, start by cooking the shallot and the garlic in the butter over moderate heat, stirring, until they are pale golden. Then, add the flour, and cook the mixture, stirring, for 1 minute.
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Next, stir in the wine, the bottled clam juice (in my case since I didn't have clam juice on hand, I used chicken stock and suggest you do the same unless you want it to be over-poweringly clammy), and the clams with the juice and simmer the sauce, stirring, for 5 minutes.
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Now, pluck your lovely herbs from your herb garden... What? You don't have an herb garden? Why? Even people with black thumbs (like me) can grow herbs, I promise you. And there's nothing in the world like fresh herbs. Try a few plants this year... I promise you'll be hooked and growing every herb you can get your hands on next year. Pictured here is some beautiful thyme (smaller leaves) and oregano (bigger leaves). I didn't yet have flat leaf parsley, so I used dried.
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Stir in your herbs (don't be afraid to use whatever herbs YOU think taste good - don't let the recipe rule your taste buds!), and hit the mixture with some salt and pepper to taste. Simmer the sauce for a bit and as you can see, it begins to thicken. If it gets too thick on you, just thin it out with a bit more chicken stock.
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Now, while you were making your sauce, you should have been boiling your pasta in salted boiling water. To finish this dish, just take your cooked pasta and add it to your pan of sauce. Keeping the flame on low, toss the pasta in with the sauce and let it heat through for a couple minutes. This will help the flavors of the sauce penetrate the noodles and the dish will come together as one.

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That's it! Just plate your pasta and dig in! Easy to make and addicting to eat.


Linguine with Herbed Clam Sauce
Gourmet July 1993

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Can be prepared in 45 minutes or less.
Servings: Serves 2.

Ingredients
1/2 cup chopped shallot
2 garlic cloves forced through a garlic press
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/3 cup dry white wine
1 cup bottled clam juice (<-- I used chicken stock and kind of think that's the way to go)
a 10-ounce can whole baby clams including the juice
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley leaves
2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme leaves or 3/4 teaspoon dried, crumbled
1/2 pound linguine

Preparation
In a deep skillet cook the shallot and the garlic in the butter over moderate heat, stirring, until they are pale golden, add the flour, and cook the mixture, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in the wine, the bottled clam juice, and the clams with the juice and simmer the sauce, stirring, for 5 minutes. Stir in the parsley, the thyme, and salt and pepper to taste and keep the sauce warm. In a kettle of salted boiling water boil the linguine until it is al dente, drain it, and in the skillet toss it with the clam sauce.

7/16/08

Any Suggestions?

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(me on vacation in Belgium a few years ago - strike a pose!)

It's not often that I post anything that isn't a recipe with step-by-step instructions and photos on how to make it. However, I thought that it might be fun to throw a question out there into the universe and see what kind of response I get back. I sometimes look at my visitor stats for this site because it's fun to see where my readers live and I see that you guys are all over the place! So, I figured you'd be the perfect group to pose this question to.

Sometime in the future Mark and I are planning to take a vacation across this fine country and we're trying to decide what cities we should stop in. When it comes to vacations, we're all about the food (of course), so we want to stop in cities that will have something cool to offer in a culinary sense. So that's where you all come in. Does your city have a really great place to eat? Is it famous for a certain type of food? If so, please share! I'd love to hear the stories of your cities straight from the source and it just might make it easier for us to decide where we'd like to go!

Thanks and I'll stop back here later to post a delicious Pasta with Clam Sauce recipe for ya. :-)

7/12/08

Seared Scallops with Tarragon Sauce

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Hello everybody! How ya been? I've been kinda busy lately and the times when I wasn't busy, well... I just didn't feel like being in front of the computer! Ever feel like that? I mean, I really wanted to post to this blog, but I thought to myself, "I'd rather poke my own eyes out than come home from work and get right back in front of the computer!" So, to save my sanity (and eyesight), I decided to take a little vacation from the PC.

Today, however, I got back in the mood and the first thing I wanted to do was re-vamp the look of FOODIE. It needed a little umph so I sat down with my Olympus Master software and got crackin' at a new logo. Whatcha think? I figure I'll switch it up with different beautiful seasonal food pictures as the seasons change or something.

Anyway, let's talk about these scallops, shall we? Now THIS is the way to prepare scallops. Yum! This sauce is a winner, I promise you. It's perfect for a nice light dinner on a hot summer day, or any day for that matter. It has a tangy flavor that's addicting. I will definitely make this sauce again.

I found the recipe on Epicurious.com and decided to try it because it got rave reviews. Over 90 people reviewed this recipe and most really liked it. That's usually a pretty good sign. Of course, you always have a few really horrible reviews mixed in there, but the comments always crack me up. They're usually coming from a person that barely knows how to cook and you can tell by the comment they make.

Now, when you check out the recipe at the end of this post, you'll notice that mashed potatoes are part of it. I decided to just make the scallops and use the sauce to ladle over top of them. I did end up making mashed potatoes, but served them on the side and made them my own way with some roasted garlic. I steamed up some green beans and we had ourselves a great little dinner.

Here's how the scallops and sauce are made:

This literally is one of the easiest and fastest things to make, so feel free to put this on your "dinners during the week" list because it's no sweat at all. The garlic mashed potatoes I made with them took much longer than the main dish part. So if you're short on time, you could just make these babies and serve a salad on the side and be done with it! Saving on calories, too!

Ok, so start by searing your scallops. You want to do this first because you need the reserved juices from the pan to make your lovely tarragon sauce.

So, melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle the scallops with salt and pepper. Add the scallops and sear on both sides until golden brown. Transfer them to a plate and tent with foil. Reserve the juices in the skillet.
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Now, make the sauce. Place wine and shallots in a small saucepan and simmer over medium heat until reduced to glaze, about 3 minutes.
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Next, stir in the cream and simmer 1 minute.
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Then gradually whisk in 1/4 cup butter and stir in the reserved pan juices from your scallops. Finally, stir in 1 1/2 tablespoons tarragon and season with to taste with salt and pepper. Mmmm, doesn't that look purdy? You can actually SEE how yummy this sauce is.
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That's it! Just plate your scallops and ladle the tarragon sauce over them. As I mentioned before, I served mine with garlic mashed potatoes and green beans. Delicious! I don't make much more than once, but I'll make this dish again.

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Scallops with Mashed Potatoes with Tarragon Sauce
Bon Appétit January 2002

Servings: Makes 4 servings.

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Ingredients
2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) plus 1 tablespoon butter, room temperature
2/3 cup (or more) whole milk
12 sea scallops, side muscles trimmed

1/3 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons chopped shallot
2 tablespoons whipping cream
1 1/2 tablespoons plus 1/4 cup chopped fresh tarragon

Preparation
Place potatoes in large pot. Cover with cold water. Add 1 teaspoon salt and bring to boil over high heat. Boil until potatoes are tender when pierced with skewer, about 8minutes. Drain. Return to pot. Using potato masher, mash potatoes. Mash in 1/4 cup butter. Stir in 2/3 cup milk. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 hour ahead. Let stand at room temperature. Before serving, stir over medium heat until heated through, adding more milk by tablespoonfuls if dry.)

Melt 1 tablespoon butter in large skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle scallops with salt and pepper. Add scallops; sauté until just opaque in center, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to plate; tent with foil. Reserve juices in skillet.

Place wine and shallots in small saucepan. Simmer over medium heat until reduced to glaze, about 3 minutes. Stir in cream; simmer 1 minute. Gradually whisk in remaining 1/4 cup butter. Stir in reserved pan juices. Stir in 1 1/2 tablespoons tarragon. Season tarragon sauce to taste with salt and pepper.

Stir remaining 1/4 cup tarragon into warm mashed potatoes. Divide potatoes among 4 shallow bowls. Place scallops atop mashed potatoes. Drizzle with tarragon sauce and serve.