Friday, March 7, 2008

Scallops with saffron and squid ink linguine

I bought some black, squid ink linguine at Target, of all places, several weeks ago. I found a recipe online and tried it last weekend. I was intrigued by this recipe because of the saffron. I love it and it works well with seafood, as I found out when I ate the delicious bouillabaise at Vin Rouge not too long ago. It's a delicate balance though. Too much saffron overpowers the subtlety of the scallops. Not enough saffron just makes the sauce yellow, so start conservatively and add a few threads until you get the taste you like. I usually crumble the saffron between my fingers when I add it to a sauce.

The recipe turned out very well even though I substituted frozen peas for fresh snow peas which are not really in season yet. Be very generous with the butter in the sauce. I used a dry white Burgundy in the sauce. It was YUMMY. My beau was highly impressed (though, happily, he is not hard to please). The scallops should cook as little as possible because they very quickly turn into hockey pucks!

1/2 pound sea scallops
1/2 pound squid ink linguine
1/2 pound snow peas
For the Saffron sauce:
1/2 cup finely minced shallots
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 to 2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 to 2 sticks cold butter, cut into pieces
1 pinch saffron threads
Fresh lemon juice
Salt and white pepper to taste
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the linguine and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, about 10 minutes.

Make the saffron sauce. In a heavy saucepan combine shallots and white wine. Reduce to 2 tablespoons and then add saffron threads and 1 to 2 tablespoons of cream. Place pan over high heat and whisk in butter a piece at a time, adding the next piece before the last one has completely melted, stirring constantly. Do not allow mixture to boil. Add fresh lemon juice and salt and white pepper to taste.

Place scallops in a steamer over simmering water and steam for 2 to 3 minutes. Then add snow peas and steam 1 minute more. Transfer linguine to a plate, top with scallops and snow peas and top with sauce.

1 comment:

Marsosudiro said...

OOh - parallel lives! I've been just about overdosing on "pulpo en su tinta" (squid in a squid ink sauce) down here in Mexico.

Your scallops and saffron sound great. I bet they'd even be great on a corn tortilla.