Scallops in shells; an elegant, sit-down appetizer. Simple and can be prepared ahead; fill shells and refrigerate or freeze. Makes 6 appetizers.

1 small onion, sliced 1
1 stalk celery, cut up 1
1 bay leaf 1
3 slices lemon 3
1/2 cup white wine 125 mL
1 cup water 250 mL
1 lb scallops quartered if large 450 g
1/4 cup butter 50 mL
1/4 cup finely chopped onions 50 mL
1/2 cup mushrooms, sliced 125 mL
1/4 cup flour 50 mL
dash of pepper
1 cup light cream 250 mL
1/2-1 cup optional gruyere cheese 125-250 mL
2 tbsp dry white wine 25 mL
1/2 cup reserved court bouillon 125 mL
1 tbsp chopped parsley 25 mL
3/4 cup bread crumbs 175 mL
3/4 cup or less parmesan cheese 175 mL
2-3 tbsp melted butter 25-50 mL

COURT BOUILLON In medium saucepan, combine water, onion, celery, bay leaf and lemon, bring to boil, reduce heat, simmer uncovered for 10 minutes. Add 1/2 cup [125 mL] wine. Add washed and drained scallops, gently simmer covered for 6 minutes, or till tender. Drain, reserve liquid. Set scallops aside.

SAUCE Melt butter in med. saucepan, sauté chopped onions and mushrooms stirring until tender, about 5 min. Remove from heat; stir in flour and pepper to blend well. Gradually stir in cream. Bring to boil, stirring.

Reduce heat, simmer stirring frequently, until thick, 4-5 min. Add cheese, stir till melted. Remove from heat. Stir in 2 tbsp [25 mL] white wine, 1/2 cup [125 mL]court bouillon and the parsley; add scallops, mix well. Divide into six scallop shells.

TOPPING Toss bread crumbs and cheese with melted butter. Scatter over top.

Place scallop shells on cookie sheet. Broil 4 inches from heat until golden-brown and hot-2 to 3 minutes. If frozen thaw then bake in 400°F [200°C] oven for 15 to 20 minutes until browned.

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