Breezy Coquilles St. Jacques
HAPPY BASTILLE DAY!!! This is our traditional Bastille Day meal, & my very own take on "Coquilles St. Jacques" after trying out many different recipes. Don't be put off by the number of steps - it does put together quickly. Rich, colorful, DELICIOUS, & easily increased for larger parties.:chef:
(Serves 2-3 as an entree - 4-6 as an appetizer.)
Breezy Coquilles St. Jacques
1 pound bay scallops (thawed frozen work fine), rinsed
Approx. 1 cup dry vermouth (or dry white wine such as Pinot Grigio or Chablis)
Approx. 1 cup water
1 Bay Leaf
Approx. 1/2 cup half-and-half
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon flour
8 ounces sliced White Button Mushrooms
1 small red bell pepper, diced
1 "clove" of shallot, peeled & minced
Approx. 1/2 cup Italian flat-leaf parsley, chopped
Approx. 8 ounces Gruyere cheese, shredded
Freshly ground white (or black) pepper to taste
Buttered baking dish, buttered individual gratin dishes, or large natural scallop shells brushed with melted butter. (I use the large natural scallop shells when serving this as an appetizer.)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a skillet large enough to hold vegetables & saute mushrooms, bell pepper, shallot, & parsley until tender & softened, but not browned. Set aside.
Bring wine, water, & bay leaf to a boil & add scallops. (If necessary, add more wine & water in equal portions to cover scallops completely.) Lower heat & poach for 1-2 minutes ONLY, depending on size. Using a slotted spoon or spider, remove scallops to a bowl & set aside. Raise heat & reduce wine/water mixture until only approximately half a cup remains. Remove & discard bay leaf. Pour liquid into measuring cup & set aside.
Add half-and-half to wine/water mixture in measuring cup to make 1 cup of liquid. In a saucepan large enough to hold all ingredients, melt remaining 1 tablespoon of butter & stir in tablespoon of flour. Cook, stirring constantly, for just a minute or two to remove raw taste from flour. Still stirring constantly, slowly pour in measuring-cup mixture & continue cooking until it starts to thicken. Gently add in vegetable mixture & scallops.
Pour into baking dish, individual gratin dishes, or scallop shells & top with shredded Gruyere cheese. Depending on what size baking dish(es) you're using, bake until heated through & cheese is melted & bubbly.
Serve with a nice mixed green salad & good crusty bread.
This is a recipe I will definitely use, Breezy. It sounds delish, and I have just the right individual casseroles to use. In addition to the cheese, I think I'll top mine with some buttered Panko crumbs.
One item I can get consistently great is IQF large scallops.
My favorite is to sear them, then deglaze with sherry, cream, a touch of cayenne, and some green peppercorns. Serve over either linguini or, if we're going fancy, a puff pastry shell. Yummy. But I may try this recipe since it is one seafood that is readily available here.
Is there a way of saying "happy basille day"? I guess I'll go with the cajun way of saying anything. "Laissez les bon tempes roullez!" (and, yes, I've probably misspelled that!)
A wonderful retro dish that I have not cooked for yonks, Paupiettes de sole vin blanc is another fav, I grew up with this type of dish and had forgotten about them.
Coquilles or Sole followed by Tournedos Rossini then Tarte Normand would be in my top 10 meals.:smile:
Thanks Breezy :)
I have only had scallops once and they were wrinkly dry horrible little things, haven't had the guts to try them since! This recipe makes me wanna try making them myself. I think I just had a bad first experience!
The biggest key to enjoying scallops is to remember that as far as cooking time goes - LESS IS MORE. Fresh scallops are perfectly palatable raw, which is always a good key when figuring cooking time. In fact, raw scallops are frequently offered at sushi restaurants. So whether using little bay scallops, regular sea scallops, or the giant diver sea scallops, always lean towards the very least amount of cooking time & you won't go far wrong. The ones in my recipe are just briefly blanched/poached, & then really just heated through while the cheese melts on the casserole(s). The fact that they're enrobed in the sauce helps protect them from turning to rubber during the 2nd cooking process.
If I were just broiling them or pan-sauteeing them, it'd be just 2 minutes tops, depending on their size. Some bay scallops are about 3/4", but others like the cheaper Calico scallops aren't much larger than pencil erasers, so you have to take that into consideration. But always - LESS IS MORE. Always better undercooked than overcooked.
Oh - edited to add that if all your market has are the larger sea scallops, you can use those as well. Just cut them into quarters. Not horizontal slices, but vertical quarters.
I'll sear them quickly in a hot pan with butter :)
this looks good breezy. copied and saved. thanks. :chef:
a diver buddy is supposed to bring me some large scallops the next time he goes out. he brings back bags of the tasty little buggers.
and you're not kidding about how good raw scallops taste. i often ask sushi chefs if they have hotategai. a real treat.
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