Last Meal Sea Scallops with Apples, Onions, and Spicy Greens

March 18, 2014
0 Ratings
  • Serves 4
Author Notes

One day when my beloved mom was with me for a visit, the market had beautiful dry scallops, locally cured applewood bacon, and perfectly fresh honey crisp apples. My mom adored scallops and needed a mother-daughter get-together to give her an excuse to eat just a little bacon. She died 18 months ago of ALS (Lou Gehrig's or motor neurone disease). This was the last meal that I made for her before she lost the ability to chew - at which point I started making pureed soups and custards.

You get sweet from the scallops, apples and onion, salty from the bacon, sour from lemon and bitter/pepper from the greens, which makes for quite the taste rainbow.
I've never actually measured anything when making this recipe so if you try it and think quantities need adjusting please let me know!
It's easy enough for a weeknight dinner but fancy enough for a dinner party, and it has the added bonus of only using one pan. —plainhomecook

What You'll Need
  • Make the salad.
  • 4 slices applewood smoked bacon
  • 1 large sweet onion
  • 1 crisp apple (honey crisp or granny smith are good)
  • juice of one lemon
  • Cook the scallops.
  • 1 glug olive oil
  • 1 drip reserved bacon fat
  • 1.5 pounds sea scallops, tough muscle removed and halved if they're very thick
  1. Make the salad.
  2. In a large metal (not non-stick) skillet, fry the bacon over moderate heat until it's crispy.
  3. While the bacon is frying, peel and slice the onion lengthwise, then slice it thinly. Peel and core the apple and slice it into 1/4" thick slices.
  4. When the bacon is crisp, drain it on paper towels and crumble it when it's cool enough to handle. Pour off the fat in the skillet and reserve it.
  5. Add a glug of olive oil and a drip of bacon fat back to the skillet, and heat over moderate heat 'til it shimmers. Add the onions and apples and a pinch of salt, and saute for 5 minutes, when the onions should be softened and the apples a bit tender. Put the apple and onion mixture into a bowl and keep it warm.
  6. Toss the greens with some lemon juice and a little olive oil if you feel like it.
  1. Cook the scallops.
  2. Heat the oil and bacon fat over moderately high heat in your same skillet. When it's almost smoking add the scallops and sear them for about a minute and a half per side.
  3. I like to serve this with couscous cooked with chicken stock and a little buttter. To serve, put the greens on your plate and top with the apples & onions. Put the couscous on the plate and top with some scallops, some crumbled bacon, and a drizzle of lemon juice.

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