Cooking in a parchment-paper pouch is a traditional way to quickly infuse flavor into delicate seafood. Here, the flavor is butter and lemon, a classic with almost anything that swims, and the seafood is scallops. The twist is the lemon: It’s salt-preserved, citron confit, a staple in Mediterranean cuisines. You can make and refrigerate the packets up to 6 hours ahead; let them come to room temperature on the counter while you preheat the oven.
Reprinted with permission from Short Stack Editions Vol. 30: Butter, by Dorie Greenspan (shortstackeditions.com). —Dorie Greenspan
Preheat the oven to 475°F and place a rack in the center position Cut four 15-inch squares of parchment paper.
Assemble each pouch: Place a few spinach leaves in the center of the paper, season lightly with salt and pepper (but go easy—the lemon is salty), add 1 /2 teaspoon of lemon and scatter with 1 /2 teaspoon of butter cut into bits. Arrange 4 scallops over the butter, top with another 1 /2 teaspoon of lemon and 8 tomato halves; season lightly with salt and pepper. Add 1 tablespoon of wine and finish with 1 tablespoon of butter cut into bits. Pull up the corners of the parchment to encase the ingredients in a hobo sack and tie it with kitchen twine. Place the pouches on a baking sheet.
Cook the pouches for 8 minutes. Place each pouch in a soup bowl. Untie the packets, being careful of the steam, and serve immediately.
Called a “culinary guru” by the New York Times and inducted into the James Beard Who’s Who of Food and Beverage in America, Dorie Greenspan is the author of 13 cookbooks, her latest is Everyday Dorie. Some of her other bestselling cookbooks include Dorie's Cookies, Baking Chez Moi, Around My French Table and Baking From My Home to Yours.