Grilled Scallops and Nectarines with Corn and Tomato Salad - Dorie Greenspan
This is an incredible recipe, published in last August's Bon Appétit by the marvelous Dorie Greenspan. I made it for the first time last summer for my parents, who were incredulous as hell when I pitched the idea. "Try it," I told them, "grilled fruit is not nearly as mysterious as it seems," so I made it and they did. It was delicious. The tender scallops paired perfectly with the tangy and slightly sweet corn salad, and the grilled nectarines developed a divine caramelized sugar flavor. I can think of nothing I'd rather make on one of those crazy-hot Sacramento evenings, when the though of eating anything heavy and fatty is terror inducing.
I admit, dear reader: I made this out of season. Forwith I have sinned and used Chilean nectarines. I am not particularly repentant. I am willing summer to get here desperately. I step outside every day and think "It has got to be summer by now," and New Orleans always keeps me on the hook. I made this dish because although it did not taste as good as it would be in the middle of July, it was good enough. Locavores are politely invited to shove it on this one.
Grilled Scallops and Nectarines with Corn and Tomato Salad Bon Appétit | August 2008
by Dorie Greenspan
Yield: Makes 6 servings
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated lime peel
1/8 teaspoon (generous) piment d'Espelette or chili powder
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Fleur de sel*
24 large sea scallops, side muscles removed, patted dry
3 firm but ripe nectarines (white or yellow), each cut into 6 wedges
Olive oil, for brushing
1 1/2 cups fresh corn kernels, cut from 2 large ears of corn
24 grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
1/3 cup thinly sliced basil leaves
Fleur de sel
3/4 cup (loosely packed) fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Fleur de sel
First, whisk together the lime juice, peel, oil, and salt in a little bowl. (I have no piment d' Espelette and am not sure where I might get it.) Cayenne pepper is a decent substitute. Make the basil puree, which is eminently simple. Just chop basil coarsely and puree with oil and salt until smooth.
Prepare a barbeque or grill pan on medium high heat. Brush the scallops and sliced nectarines with oil, add salt and pepper, and grill until the scallops are cooked through. On this occasion, I added some leftover shrimp to the mix, and I think they made a nice addition.
Grill the nectarines until they are a little bit charred.
Next, make the corn salad. Cut the kernels off the cobs, then eat the remnants of the kernels on the cobs (if you are like me). Toss the corn and as much dressing as you feel is required in a medium bowl, then toss the halved cherry tomatoes with the rest of the dressing in another. Season both with salt and pepper. Dorie Greenspan says it is best to scatter the corn around the plated scallops and nectarines. I am lazier and simply tried to arrange them on top. I do not think this would affect dinner in any meaningful way unless you are hosting a Michelin inspector or something.
Arrange the tomatoes and nectarines on the plates, then drizzle the remaining dressing and the basil puree over the plates. Add some more basil and fleur de sel. Serve with a good white wine. Consider moving to an entirely warm climate where nectarines and scallops are magically in season at all times. Take me with you.
I served this with some mixed mushrooms on the side, mostly because I had a jones for them. I think this was not a bad combination, but not by any means necessary either. I love those Mycopia mushroom packs at Raleys. I love getting the sensation that I am eating space aliens.