Author Notes: This was a dish I made once, long ago, to teach myself how to properly sear a scallop. I thought the creaminess of the scallop would be excellent over a bed of creamy leeks. The result was so good, it became regular party fare - perfect piled in an Asian soup spoon and served with a glass of champagne. —Erin McDowell
Serves 8-10 as an appetizer
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 5 large leeks, washed well, thinly sliced
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, or more to taste
- 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or more to taste
- pinch red pepper flakes
- 3 tablespoons heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons creme fraiche
- 20 large sea scallops, dried well
- kosher salt, as needed
- freshly ground black pepper, as needed
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- To make the creamy leeks, heat the butter in a large saute pan. Add the leeks and cook, over low heat, until very tender - 8-10 minutes.
- Season the leeks with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Add the cream and bring to a simmer. Simmer for a moment until the cream thickens and becomes a homogenous part of the mixture, 1-2 minutes. Stir in the creme fraiche. Keep warm.
- Season the scallops with salt and pepper on both sides. In another large saute pan, heat the butter and olive oil over medium high heat. When the pan/fat is hot, add the scallops (presentation side down). Cook, undisturbed, until the scallop is golden around the edges, about 2 minutes. Turn the scallop and cook on the other side just until the scallop is cooked through, 1-2 minutes more (depending on the size of the scallop). Serve immediately over a bed of creamy leeks.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Leeks