Sauteed bay scallops with tomatoes and a touch of white wine and lemon juice served over angel hair pasta.
If you're looking for a special dinner to make for your loved one this Valentine's Day, this is a perfect dish. For starters, it takes less than 15 minutes to make, so you'll have less time cooking, and more time together. Secondly, scallops date back to ancient Greece as an aphrodisiac. As legend has it, the goddess Aphrodite was carried to earth on the shell of a scallop.
Personally, I love scallops for their sweet, delicate flavor. Bay scallops are the smaller variety and are usually less expensive than sea scallops. They are wonderful tossed with pasta and take less than a minute to cook.
Because bay scallops retain so much water, it's really important that you dry them well before cooking, and you really want to cook them in a hot pan so you get a quick sear. I cook them in 2 or 3 batches depending on the size of my pan. Don't skip this step because you don't want to overcrowd the pan, otherwise the scallops will become rubbery and won't sear.
If you're family doesn't like whole wheat pasta, a great trick I like to do is use both whole wheat and semolina. You don't really notice the taste of the whole wheat and your getting the added benefits of using a whole grain.
For all you spaghetti squash lovers out there, I'm sure this would be wonderful over roasted spaghetti squash as a gluten-free, lower-carb alternative.
Scallops and Tomatoes with Angel Hair Pasta
Servings: 4 • Size: about 1 1/4 cup • Points +: 9 pts • Smart Points: 9
Calories: 345 • Fat: 5 g • Protein: 27 g • Carb: 43 g • Fiber: 6 g • Sugar: 2.5 g
Sodium: 318 mg (without salt)
- 1 lb bay scallops, dried well
- 2 tsp olive oil, divided
- 1 tsp butter
- 3 cloves garlic, sliced
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 14 oz can diced petite tomatoes, drained
- salt and fresh pepper
- 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 cup chopped parsley
- 7 oz angel hair pasta (I used half whole wheat)*
Put a large pot of salted water to boil.
Meanwhile, heat a large heavy-bottomed skillet on high heat. When hot, add 1 tsp of oil and the butter over medium-high heat until mixture starts to brown.
MAKE SURE THE PAN AND OIL MIXTURE IS VERY HOT - Transfer HALF of the scallops to the skillet and cook WITHOUT MOVING until seared: ABOUT 30 SECONDS. Gently flip and sear on other side for another 20 - 30 SECONDS. Remove from skillet and set aside; cook remaining scallops and repeat as the first batch; set aside with first batch.
Add the angel hair to the boiling salted water, cook according to package instructions for al dente.
Reduce the skillet to medium-high heat; add remaining teaspoon of oil. When hot add the garlic and cook 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, wine, salt and pepper and cook an additional 2 minutes. Add lemon juice and 2 tablespoons of parsley, remove from heat.
Drain any liquid that accumulates from the scallops, then add the scallops to the skillet and remove from the heat.
Drain the pasta and place in a large serving bowl. Top with the scallops and sauce, more fresh parsley and serve with grated parmigiano if desired.
Makes about 5 cups.
*Use brown rice pasta or quinoa pasta for gluten free.