I was sitting at home thinking of scallops, which is something that I often do. Scallops are, I believe, one of God's more perfect foods: voloptuous, delicately marine, meaty and tender at approximately the same time, and (best of all) delightfully, astonishingly versatile. I had considered doing what I mostly do with scallops, which is to cook them in some sort of vaguely Asian way, but then decided that I'd attempt to replicate a popular restaurant dish.
Voila: Scallops with Balsamic-Port reduction sauce! Easier then it looks, tastes super delicious. Your friends and family will consider you a hero.
Obtain some good, large scallops - I generally do about four or five healthy sized specimens a person. But I am greedy.
Balsamic-Port Reduction Ingredients:
2 cups of balsamic vinegar.
2 cups of decent Port wine. (Don't use crap.)
I cup of brown sugar.
Get a small sauce pot and combine all the ingredients. Turn on a low flame, stir until the sugar is dissolved, then simmer until the liquid is reduced by about 3/4 - this should take around 15 minutes. Be sure to keep a close eye on it and taste often. When the consistency gets thick and the flavor gets super intense and profoundly delicious, you're good to go.
Next, sear the scallops to your desired level of doneness -I like em' just a little bit rare, but your mileage may vary. Serve the scallops with the sauce drizzled over them, with the bowl at the table to apply at will. This dish goes beautifully with fresh polenta, spinach, or simple sauteed broccoli, as well as a light green salad.
I also made some sauteed wild mushrooms with garlic. Saute the mushrooms until they start to sweat a little with some finely chopped garlic and shallot, then toss in just a bit of sherry for flavor at the end. Yum.