Even if you're not an observer of Lent — which started last week — everyone should eat more fish, and not just on Fridays. This week, we'll share some Lenten friendly seafood recipes. This rich scallop recipe is adapted from one found at the Web site www.epicurious.com and was originally printed in Bon Appetit magazine in December 2005.
1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 large shallot, minced
1/3 cup apple brandy, such as Calvados
1 cup heavy whipping cream
12 large sea scallops, patted dry
1/2 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/2 cup fresh unfiltered apple juice or apple cider
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1 large garlic clove, minced
1 9-ounce bag spinach leaves
Heat 1/2 tablespoon olive oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add shallot; stir 30 seconds. Add brandy (which may ignite); boil 30 seconds. Add cream; boil 2 minutes. Transfer sauce base to bowl. (Sauce base can be made 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.)
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Sprinkle scallops with salt and pepper. Heat vegetable oil in another large nonstick skillet over high heat. Add 6 scallops.
Cook until brown, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to rimmed baking sheet; place in oven to keep warm. Repeat with remaining scallops. Add apple juice and thyme to hot skillet. Boil 1 minute, scraping up brown bits. Add sauce base; bring to boil. Remove from heat.
Heat remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add garlic and stir 30 seconds. Add spinach; toss until barely wilted and still bright green, about 2 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Using tongs, mound spinach in center of 8 plates, dividing equally.
Arrange 3 scallops on spinach on each plate. Pour any collected juices from baking sheet into sauce in skillet. Boil until thickened, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper; spoon over scallops. Makes 4 servings.