Thursday, January 22, 2015

Scallops with Farro and Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts remain one of my final frontiers for family enjoyment. They are one of my favorite vegetables, yet it's always a challenge to convince family members of their deliciousness. This recipe may have finally helped me to cross that frontier. The secret? Cut the sprouts v-e-r-y thin. I used a mandoline, then cooked until just crisp tender, and mixed them with an unusual grain. Family palates were so busy trying to decipher the grain, they simply didn't remember they don't like Brussels sprouts. Their conclusion is the taste is new, and genuinely good. Just don't tell them that the green things in the grain are Brussels sprouts. However, I'm sure that topping anything with deliciously cooked scallops might influence them, too!


For the farro and sprouts:

2/3 cup quick cooking farro
3/4 cup low sodium chicken broth
1 tsp olive oil
1 tsp minced garlic
1 Tbs diced shallot
4 finely shredded Brussels sprouts
1/4 cup white wine
1/4 tsp sea salt, if needed

For the scallops:

1 tsp butter
1 tsp olive oil
1 tsp minced garlic
8-10 scallops
1 Tbs lemon juice
1/4 cup white wine
a few grinds of black pepper
a pinch of sea salt

Directions: Combine the farro and stock in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook for about  8 to10 minutes. Remove from the heat and let it sit for a couple of minutes before you add it to the sprouts. While the farro cooks, heat a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add the olive oil, garlic, shallot, and Brussels sprouts. Cook for about 5 minutes, until the sprouts begin to turn color. Add the white wine and continue to cook for another minute or so, until the wine cooks off and and sprouts begin to simmer. When the farro is done, add it to the sprouts, mixing until combined. Taste the mixture, adding salt if needed.

When the farro and Brussels sprouts are almost done, you can start the scallops. Set a second nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the butter, olive oil, and garlic and heat for about 1 minute, until the butter begins to brown. Pat the scallops dry, then add to the skillet. Add the lemon juice and white wine, and cook the scallops for 2 to 3 minutes per side, until the scallops are just translucent in the center. Add the pepper and a pinch of sea salt.

Serve by spooning half of the farro mixture onto a plate and topping with half of the scallops.

Serves 2, easily doubled

Stealthy Cooking Tip: I have found quick cooking farro that cooks in 10 minutes. Yeah! The time when you had to wait hours for this hard grain to cook is over. It's not a well known grain because until recently it was difficult to find a quick cooking variety, and most of us (well, at least me) don't want to wait a really long time for just one part of a dish to cook. I've found farro at Trader Joe's, but I'm sure you can find it at many supermarkets. You'll enjoy the slightly nutty taste!

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