Scallops with vermouth sauce
A simple to make dish for four people, using garden vegetables and herbs, there are all sorts of variations on this theme using just the shallots, vermouth and cream to this rather grander version.
- 500g/1lb Jerusalem Artichokes, peeled
- 16 scallops, halved
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Salt & black pepper
- 50g/2oz butter
- 4 shallots, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 125g/4oz mushrooms, sliced
- 1 tbsp tarragon, freshly chopped
- 1 tbsp parsley, freshly chopped
- 75ml/3 fl oz dry vermouth
- 250ml/8fl oz single cream
- A side salad if you wish, some crusty bread, and keep a box of long cook’s matches to hand
Add a squeeze of lemon juice and salt to a pan of boiling water and pop in the artichokes and cook for about 30 minutes or until tender. Drain and slice. Sprinkle lemon juice over the scallops and leave them to marinate, five minutes is enough, a little longer if you have time. Season the flour with salt and pepper and dredge the scallops in the mixture to coat them. Melt the butter in a frying pan, add the scallops and fry until they are lightly browned. You don’t want them to go rubbery.
With a slotted spoon remove them to a warm plate. Now add to the pan the shallots, sliced artichokes, garlic, sliced mushrooms, tarragon, parsley and salt and pepper to taste. Give it all a good stir and cook gently for five minutes. It’s nicer to get the shallots softened. Return the scallops to the mix and continue to cook on a low heat. Heat the vermouth in a pan – now this is where it’s handy to have the long cook’s match to set the vermouth alight. Let the flames die down and then stir in the cream, heating gently but don’t let it boil. When it’s good and hot stir into the scallop mix and serve on warm plates with (optional) crusty bread and side salad.