Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Apple Cider Seared Scallops

Ah, scallops.  I do love them.  I made some a few weeks ago and I thought, why not make them again but with a little twist??  I also really wanted to try out my Paleo "Risotto" and I do love scallops with risotto!  I found this recipe via Pinterest and it looked really good, but I knew I would need to make some changes based on what ingredients I had around the house.  Well, the result was fabulous!  I loved the flavor and texture combinations of this meal, and it was really healthy!  Here is what I did:

Apple Cider Seared Scallops
(serves 2)
  • 10 jumbo sea scallops
  • 4 slices pancetta (or bacon, but I LOVE pancetta)
  • 8-10 ounces baby spinach
  • 4 ounces mushrooms (I used white button, but any would be great)
  • olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  • about 2 T apple cider vinegar
  • about 1 T raw honey
If needed, defrost scallops fully (you want no moisture in them!).  Blot scallops dry with a paper towel and set aside to dry as much as possible (for the best sear).  Season with salt and pepper on both sides.

In a large skillet, cook pancetta//bacon over medium heat until crisp.   Remove pancetta, chop/crumble into bits (when cool) and set aside.  Keep the fat in there (pour some off if desired) and reheat to medium-high.  If there is not very much fat, add olive oil (the mushrooms need a fair amount).  Add mushrooms to pan and saute until they are soft and slightly browned.  Add additional oil if needed, and toss in the spinach a handful at a time.  It should start to wilt and it should all fit in the pan fine once it cooks down.  Stir it around until all cooked.  Season with salt and pepper and add the pancetta crumbles.  Remove it all to a plate and cover with foil to keep hot (if you want to reuse the pan for the scallops- or else, just keep it in the pan and set aside).

Reheat the pan to high heat (or heat a new skillet) until really hot.  Add about 1 T olive oil to the pan and once it gets hot, place the scallops down into the pan.  Cook without touching them(!!)  for about 3 minutes, or until the bottom of the scallop is dark brown.   Turn the scallops over and sear the other side.  Remove the scallops to the plate/pan with the spinach mixture and cover to keep warm.  Turn back the heat to medium and pour in some apple cider vinegar and honey.  It will heat up and start to bubble FAST. Stir around for about 1-2 minutes until thickened.  To serve, place scallops over a bed of the spinach/mushrooms and pour some sauce over top.  Yum!

Like I said, I served mine with Paleo risotto and it was a delicious meal!  This is one of those restaurant-quality meals (in MY opinion), and it makes it better that it is Paleo-friendly.  Enjoy!

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