Wednesday, May 4, 2011
Seared Scallops with Pea Puree
I've made all my own baby food for both of my kids. I steam, puree and freeze all sorts of organic vegetables and fruits into little ice cubes so that I knew my little ones had the very best (and freshest) foods. There were very few exceptions to this, mostly when we traveled. I had no way of packing up the frozen cubes and keeping them during a long day of travel. So on those occasions I'd buy a few jars of Gerber when we got to our destination to carry us over for a few days.
A few months ago as my son started eating solids and I began making his purees, I was at Whole Foods one day getting new ideas for him. There was a table set up and two women offering samples for a new baby food. The concept was new to me. Its called Nurturme and its simply pouches of freeze dried fruits or vegetables that mix with water. What I loved were the pouches. If I'm running out, I can throw a pouch in my bag and prepare it when we get to our destination. It travels much better than jars. I tried all four varieties and decided to buy a box of the peas. If you look at the ingredients, it's just peas. They tasted so amazingly fresh, better than any peas I'd had in a long time.
Well, last week, I wanted to make a pea puree to go under the scallops I was making for dinner. The farmers market had NO peas! I didn't want to use frozen (and certainly not canned!). As I sat wondering what I could do, I remembered the freeze dried peas I had in my pantry. I debated and debated, do I really want to use baby food for dinner? What would my husband think?
Well I did it! Not only was it prettier than frozen peas would have been, the taste is so amazingly vibrant and fresh. I served the dish with some herbed basmati rice and steamed asparagus. It was a perfect meal to get me in the mood for spring. I know there are a lot of customers who use the powders to mix into toddler foods, but I am curious to see how I can utilize the other varieties in a family meal.
1 pound dry sea scallops
2 teaspoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons oil
fresh ground black pepper
Remove the side muscle from the scallops. Clean with cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Liberally salt and pepper both sides.
Add the butter and oil to a sauté pan and heat over high heat. When the oil begins to smoke, gently add the scallops. Don't crowd the pan, be sure they don't touch. Sear for 1.5 minutes per side.
Meanwhile, mix the pea puree powder with water until desired consistency is reached. Serve scallops over pea puree.