Fancy Pants

While planning our grocery store trip last week, I asked Steve if he felt like splurging on something.  We are like-minded to a fault, so that night we came home with a container of scallops.  They go for twenty-one dollars a pound at Wegman’s (I know!), but as I only purchased eight, it was a mere seventeen bucks.  Still, not something I want to add to our weekly grocery bill (although my taste buds disagree).

A little while later, Steve asked if I’d ever cooked scallops before.  “Never!  But how hard can it be?”  The answer: not hard at all!  I followed a recipe from my favorite Clean Eating cookbook (Tosca Reno’s Eat Clean Diet: Recharged) and ended up with a restaurant-quality dinner from my own kitchen.  While I enjoy creating recipes of my own (although I haven’t done too much of that lately), I think it’s really useful to start by following other recipes first.  I suppose it’s a bit like the relationship between reading good writing and producing good writing – you get to see what works and build from there.

The fancy part of this meal, scallops aside, is the vegetables.  It calls for thinly-sliced red pepper and scallion, but also for zucchini and carrot that you slice with a vegetable peeler.  Then they’re all seasoned and sautéed.

IMG_4860I must admit I was a bit nervous about cooking the scallops; I wanted a good meal and didn’t want to waste nearly twenty bucks.  Every recipe I’ve seen says to cook them in a non-stick skillet.  I don’t entirely trust my skillets, so I opted for the Dutch oven – you can’t go wrong!

IMG_4872They only required a little olive oil in the dish, and they cooked for about 4-5 minutes on each side until they browned. This was extraordinarily easy and smelled divine!

In addition to the vegetables and scallops, this recipe called for quinoa, which is easy enough to cook.  In the end, I piled it up on the plate and stared in awe.

IMG_4893

I still can’t entirely believe that this meal came from my kitchen, but there it is on one of my plates!  With the quinoa and veggies, four scallops was almost more than enough for me.  The flavors were out of this world, and this is definitely something I’m going to revisit and adapt over the summer.

Anyone else have a fancy-ish dish they absolutely love? Your own twist on one?

 

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