Scallops are expensive and make an impressive appetizer. It is a shame it they get burned. If you use clarified butter, you can fry the scallops at a very high heat with less risk of burning. You can make a large container and keep it in the refrigerator indefinitely and you will always have it handy when needed. Here is a nice little dish that is easy and quick. If serving them for guests, wait to the last minute to fry them. It takes just a few minutes.
Sautéed Scallops with Lemon-Caper Vinaigrette Serves 4
3 tbsp. clarified butter (see bottom of page)
12 Scallops , cleaned (hinge removed)
2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. capers
pinch of grated garlic
2 tbsp. oliven oil
2 tsp. vinegar
2 tsp. lemon juice
pinch of freshly ground pepper
Garnish: wood sorrel* or another herb
To make scallops, heat the clarified butter in a sauté pan or skillet over high heat until hot. Season scallops with salt and pepper, dust with flour on all sides, and sauté until golden brown, about 1 minute per side. Remove pan from heat and let scallops rest in the pan for 1 minute.
To make vinaigrette, whisk together all ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.
To serve, arrange scallops on four plates and come a spoonful or two around the scallops. Garnish with wood sorrel or another herb and a lemon wedge..
Suggested accompaniment: flutes or another bread
To make clarified butter, melt 1 lb. of unsalted butter over very low heat. The butter should melt but not boil. Once completely melted, it will separate into three layers. On top is the white foam, then a clear golden layer that is clarified butter and under that is a milky liquid that is milk solids. Skim off the form and discard. Ladle the clarified butter into a container; cover and refrigerate indefinitely. Discard the milk solids.
*wood sorrel are tender, sour leaves with tart yellow (sometimes purple) flowers and taste excellent.