One of Hubby’s favorite things from the sea has to be Scallops. They are almost like round, sweetly mild white fish, just not flaky like a perfectly cooked piece of fish would be. Scallops lend themselves beautifully to an array of flavor enhancements.
Today is National Baked Scallops Day. Now I thought about creating an entire menu around scallops – with scallop appetizers and main dishes and sides. But that would just create scallop overload. And depending upon where you live and the price of decent seafood, it might just cause budget overload as well. So I decided one dish was enough, thank you. Especially one that could be a part of something more. Great for a small cocktail party with a lovely presentation, or as an appetizer to scrupulous things to come. Could be your seafood course or a lovely luncheon with warm breads and a salad to round things out. I especially like the use of the scallop shells. These can be had on-line or you could use small ramekins. You just need a way to cup the scallop in a little butter while its baking.
I’ve got to tell you, anytime I see a scallop shell, my mind wanders to the Camino de Santigo. The Scallop Shell is such a powerful symbol of El Camino, and because of that you can find its image in churches around the world that are dedicated to Saint James.
I love that there are symbols everywhere reminding us of the gift of faith and the love of our Heavenly Father. Tomorrow is the 3rd Friday of Lent. Wouldn’t these scallops make for a nice simple dish, eaten from the a shell much the way legend tells us Pilgrims traveling The Way once did?
Oven-Baked Scallops in Shells
12 large Sea Scallops
12 Food-Grade Scallop Shells
6 tablespoons Butter, melted
2 Garlic Cloves
3 tablespoons Dry White Wine
1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
2 tablespoons Breadcrumbs
Pinch Cayenne Pepper
Italian Parsley, for garnish
1 Lemon, zested for garnish
Heat the oven to 350-degrees.
Rinse the scallops and pat dry. Set aside. Lightly grease scallop shells, set shells on a rimmed baking pan. Place a scallop on each shell. Make sure shells are steady and won’t move around. If necessary, secure with crumbled foil. Set aside.
Melt butter in a small microwave safe bowl. While the butter melts, finely mince the garlic.
Let the butter cool slightly, then mix in the wine, breadcrumbs, salt, Cayenne Pepper, and minced garlic. Set aside for a few minutes until the mixture thickens. Spoon the mixture on top of each scallop.
Cover the pan with foil and bake until scallops are cooked through, for about 15 to 20 minutes, the cooking time depends on the thickness of scallops.
While the scallops are baking, finely mince some parsley and set aside. Zest the lemon, set the zest aside.
When the scallops are ready, remove from oven. Garnish with fresh parsley and lemon zest. If desired, squeeze juice from the lemon over the scallops just before serving.