Scallop with Tomatoes

The tomato season is coming to an end. But you can still find good tomatoes out there. In winter, when fresh good tomatoes are scarce, the back-up is canned plum tomatoes, preferably imported. For now, I'm still creating and eating tomato dishes. In this latest recipe, I'm combining tomatoes with one of my favorite seafood, scallops. This recipe is fairly easy. The usual ingredients are probably in your cupboard right now. The only innovation is saffron, still one of the most exotic seasonings around. Saffron can be expensive. But you just use a pinch. A little bit can go a long way. It gives color and a distinct flavor that no other herb possesses. Scallops can go with almost any grain or vegetable. This time around I serve the scallops with whole wheat linguini; but you can serve it with rice, or couscous, potatoes, or whatever. You won't be disappointed.


1 1/2 pound scallops
1 medium onion, peeled and sliced into thin rings
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 pound ripe tomatoes, seeded and diced. or one 28-ounce can plum tomatoes, drained and diced
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely minced
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/4 teaspoon saffron thread, crushed

1. Rinse scallops under cold running water. Drain, and dry on paper towels. If the scallops are large, you can halve them horizontally.
2. Heat butter and olive oil in a saute pan or deep skillet.
3. Add onions and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, for 3-4 minutes.
4. Add tomatoes, oregano, salt and pepper. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring, for about 5 minutes.
5. Add garlic and cook for 3 minutes more.
6. Stir in cream, white wine and saffron threads. Bring to a boil. Add scallops and cook over medium heat, stirring, until scallops are tender and white, about 2 minutes. Serve over whole wheat pasta, rice, or couscous.
    Yield: 4 servings. 

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