Pan Seared Scallops With Rice and Asparagus Puree

by Kaylene
2 Servings
35 min

Pan seared scallops with herb rice and a creamy asparagus purée. This recipe has the feel of fancy but easy to make for the perfect date night in dinner.

Hi Friends! The last few months have been a whirlwind for me and Tyler. A move and a new puppy can take up so much time. Especially the new puppy part. It’s funny how such a small animal can take up so much of your time!

We were chatting in the kitchen while making our dinner and realized that we haven’t been out to eat in who knows how long. Not even a lunch.  Jupiter is growing up so fast and we know soon we will be able to return to a normal life. One that we do not need to worry about leaving him alone in the house for too long. Until then it’s home cooked meals.

Now, we don’t go out to eat very often to begin with, we enjoy a casual lunch with a couple beers now and then, but nothing too fancy. When change and new adventures take up all your time, it can cause you to go into routine mode and even your at home meals become a little boring.

One of my favorite things to do is cook with my husband. Being in the kitchen talking, laughing and cooking up a delicious meal. It’s one of those simple moments that I cherish so much. This recipe is perfect for a date night in, you get the fancy feeling of a restaurant in the comfort of your own home.

Okay, let me break it down for you.

Buttery, soft pan seared scallops on top of white rice with asparagus tips, parsley and chives and a flavorful asparagus puree with lemon and garlic.

I am not joking when I say…this asparagus purée is heaven. I practically licked the blender because I couldn’t leave any behind. It is creamy with an earthy flavor that only accentuates the other flavors in the dish.

The rice is mixed with parsley, chives and the asparagus tips to add a bright and clean flavor. This all leads up to the plump, soft and buttery scallops that are so. freaking. good.

Very important. You must get every part of this dish in each bite. The mixture of the soft rice with the flavorful purée and buttery scallops is heaven.

Add this to your menu for your next date night in! Or since Valentine’s day is coming up skip the reservations and stay home. If you are looking for some more date night in dishes check out these  fried oysters with dill dipping sauce,  roasted rack of lamb with Dijon mustard and fresh herbs or  braised rosé wine short ribs.

Pan Seared Scallops With Rice and Asparagus Puree
Recipe details
  • 2  Servings
  • Prep time: 15 Minutes Cook time: 20 Minutes Total time: 35 min
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For the rice
  • 1 cup uncooked rice
  • 1 3/4 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • asparagus tips from 1 lb. asparagus stalks
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1 tablespoon chopped chives
For the asparagus puree
  • 1 lb. asparagus
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • cream for thinning
For the scallops
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • salt & pepper
For the rice
Trim the woody ends from the asparagus and discard.
Cut off the tips of the asparagus and place in a small bowl. Set the stems aside.
Place the rice in a bowl and cover with water. Swish the rice around and pour out the starchy water and repeat a couple more times to remove excess starch from the rice.
In a medium saucepan bring the rice and water to a boil. Add the lemon juice and asparagus tips. Cover and reduce to the lowest setting.
Gently simmer until the water has been absorbed, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the butter and mix until melted. Keep the rice covered and allow it to sit for another 5-10 minutes. Fluff with a fork and add the parsley and chives.
For the asparagus puree
Melt butter in a medium skillet on medium-low heat. Add the olive oil.
Add the garlic and sauté for 2-3 minutes until translucent but not browned.
Add the asparagus stalks. Season with salt and pepper and add thyme. Sauté for another 3-5 minutes stirring regularly until asparagus is soft but not browned.
Transfer to a blender and add the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper. Blend asparagus until puréed. Add cream if purée is too thick. Purée should be smooth and hold the spoon when scooped.
For the scallops
Dry the scallops with paper towels. Season with salt and pepper.
In a large skillet heat the butter over high heat. Add the olive oil. Just when it begins to smoke slightly add the scallops and cook for approximately 3 minutes until browned.
Using tongs to flip to the other side and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, until browned.
To assemble, smear the purée on a plate, pile the rice on top of the purée and place scallops on rice. Enjoy!
  • When making the puree, do not cook the asparagus too long. It should be soft when you squeeze the end of a stalk but not browned. The puree should be bright green, not brownish.
  • Use cream to thin the puree if needed. The puree should be smooth but hold the spoon when scooped. You don’t want a runny puree so add the cream in 1/2 teaspoon amounts at a time to avoid over thinning.
  • It is hard to know when scallops are done cooking. Look at the appearance as an indicator. They should be opaque and no longer have a translucent look and will be browned on each side.
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