Holiday Fare: Pan-Seared Sea Scallops with a Champagne Truffle Cream

Pan-Seared Sea Scallops with a Champagne Truffle Cream

Pan-Seared Sea Scallops with a Champagne Truffle Cream
Wilted Butter Lettuce and Generous Shaving of Pink-Veined Italian White Truffle

ITALIAN WHITE TRUFFLE

White truffles are very perishable and very delicate with an intense perfume reminiscent of earth, garlic, shallot and grana cheese. This gem arrived just a few days before our holiday party from my friends at Gourmet Attitude in NYC.

I wrapped the truffle in a paper towel and refrigerated it, in a large glass jar with fresh eggs. My house guests were treated to a special breakfast the morning after our party – poached eggs intensely flavored with truffle! The musky aromas penetrate through the egg shells, and after a simple 3 minute poaching… et voilà heavenly truffle eggs! The tip I learned from the truffle experts at Gourmet Attitude – to eschew standard wisdom and never store truffles in rice as it will dry them out. Store them with fresh eggs and extend the party into the next day.

Pan-Seared Sea Scallops with a Champagne Truffle Cream was the first course in our 5-course holiday dinner earlier this week. Champagne/Truffles/Scallops – a fantastic way to begin an elegant holiday feast.

Holiday Table

Holiday Table

Pan-Seared Sea Scallops with a Champagne Truffle Cream

Pan-Seared Sea Scallops with a Champagne Truffle Cream
Wilted Butter Lettuce and Generous Shaving of Pink-Veined Italian White Truffle

Regarding the pink veins, Alba White Truffle Ambassador Lidia Bastianich confides that pink veins inside that means the truffle is at its peak. She also suggests that white truffles not be cooked – as cooking alters their unique taste.

mushroom-thyme risotto with italian truffles

Mushroom-Thyme Risotto with Pink-Veined Italian White Truffle

The 2013 harvest is the best in years – with growing conditions just the right balance of wet and dry, warm and cool.  Bastianich shared, “the aromas and flavors remind me of an exotic combination of musk oil, garlic and horseradish.”

menu

cheese platter

pan-seared sea scallops, champagne truffle cream,
wilted butter lettuce, pink-veined italian white truffle

roasted broccolini soup, creme fraiche, meyer lemon,
grana padano black pepper cheese straws

rack of lamb, mint agave vinegar

brussels sprouts, pancetta, balsamic

mushroom-thyme risotto with pink-veined italian white truffle

pavlova, lemon curd, berries and pomegranate arils

Pan-Seared Sea Scallops with a Champagne Truffle Cream Recipe

Pan-Seared Sea Scallops with a Champagne Truffle CreamChampagne Truffle Cream

  • 2 T. unsalted butter
  • 1/2 c. minced shallots
  • 1 c. Champagne or sparking wine
  • 2/3 c. whipping cream
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Italian white truffle

In a small skillet, melt butter over medium heat then add shallots and cook until soft. Add Champagne and cook until reduced by half, then whisk in the cream. Simmer until the sauce thickens slightly. Turn off the heat, season with salt and pepper, and add truffle shavings.

Scallops and Wilted Butter Lettuce

Season cold dry scallops with Kosher salt. Heat a stainless steel saute pan over high heat. Add canola oil to coat the bottom of the pan. When the oil is very hot and just about to smoke, place the scallops in the pan. Be sure not to crowd the scallops. Cook over high heat for exactly two minutes to form a nice caramelized crust. Flip the scallops over with a pair of tongs, and cook for one minute only. Remove scallops then add butter lettuce leaves to the pan, stir gently until wilted and coated with scallop juices.

Pan-Seared Sea Scallops with a Champagne Truffle Cream

To plate: place wilted butter lettuce in the center of each plate. Spoon sauce around the lettuce. Place scallops about the lettuce. Garnish with a few parsley leaves. Finally, shave white Italian truffle over the top. Serve immediately…

champagne glasses

…with Champagne, of course.

Wishing you a most elegant holiday season!

10 thoughts on “Holiday Fare: Pan-Seared Sea Scallops with a Champagne Truffle Cream”

  1. Words fail! What a quietly elegant but sumptious dinner . . . methinks would like to show this to a few undoubtedly envious friends . . .

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