Saturday, March 24, 2012

Seared Scallops with Beans and Spinach: New Recipe of the Week

The more I use my Cook This, Not That cookbook, the more I like it.  The authors' premise was to simulate restaurant dishes but with considerably fewer calories and less fat content, without sacrificing flavor.  This evening I made the recipe, Seared Scallops with White Beans and Spinach, a tasty and fairly easy meal to make.  The one downside of this recipe is that scallops are pricey, so I don't know how often I would make this dish.  But tonight, Joel and I were treated to the wonderful flavor combination of the souped-up beans, spinach, and seafood. Note: the key to properly cooking scallops is to make sure they are very dry.  After rinsing them, keep patting them with paper towels until most of the moisture has been removed. 

You will need:

2 strips of bacon - I added extra at Joel's request  :)
1/2 red onion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
28 oz. can white beans, rinsed and drained 
4 cups baby spinach
1 lb. large sea scallops
salt and pepper to taste
1 T. butter
juice of one lemon (or according to taste)

Heat a medium saucepan over low heat.  Cook the bacon until it has begun to crisp.  Add the onion and garlic; sauté until the onion is soft and translucent, 2 to 3 minutes.  Add the white beans and spinach and simmer until the beans are hot and the spinach is wilted.  Keep warm. (I covered the pan to help the spinach wilt.)

Heat a large cast iron skillet sauté pan over medium-high heat.  Blot the scallops dry with a paper towel and season with salt and pepper on both sides.  Add the butter and the scallops to the pan and sear the scallops on both sides for about three minutes per side or until deeply caramelized. 

Before serving, add the lemon juice to the beans.  I only used about 1 T. lemon juice and it was plenty for our taste.  Season with salt and pepper. Divide the beans on 3 or 4 plates and top with scallops.

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