If you want to dish up a delicious dinner for that special someone then these grilled scallops with borlotti bean puree and salsa verde are it! This is an easy dish that can be made ahead of time and yet it's the sort of scallop dish you might find at a fine dining restaurant! You can make the borlotti bean puree and salsa verde ahead of time and then just grill the scallops quickly for less than 5 minutes. These grilled scallops are the perfect dinner party food! This is a pushy recipe Dear Reader!
This recipe is brought to you by #LegumesFromEurope
I made these scallops for Valentines Day dinner and Mr NQN absolutely loved them. Since V day was on a Tuesday and I had a lot of work on I didn't want to make a really fiddly dish so I made the puree and salsa verde a day ahead and I bought a dozen scallops and they were ridiculously easy to grill on the day and took all of 10 minutes!
While I loved the scallops the thing that I really, really loved which was a bit of a surprise was the borlotti bean puree. I've made bean purees before and they're good but this recipe from chef Danny Russo uses tomato in the puree and honestly it made it so good that I made another batch of it straight away. Borlotti beans are very good for you as they are low in fat and sugar but high in protein and fibre. In fact 100grams or 3.5ozs of borlotti beans has a massive 23g/0.8oz of plant based protein! Plus they're inexpensive and easy to buy and store.
I always have tinned legumes as they are so much more convenient. And while I was asked to make 4 recipes from the Legumes from Europe site for this recipe feature I loved them all so much that I'll probably work my way through them anyway because they were all great. Tinned legumes from Europe may be considered among the best as European countries have strict regulations and standards for food production. They are often made with high-quality ingredients that are free from harmful additives or preservatives. Some European countries have a long history of producing legumes which means that they have developed traditional production methods that can enhance the flavor and texture of the legumes. For example in Spain chickpeas are often cooked in a special pot called an olla which helps to soften the beans and enhance their flavor.
Ever since making this borlotti bean puree I've made this puree half a dozen times in place of mashed potato. I used to make bean puree by blending the beans with garlic, oil and a bit of stock but adding that extra tomato and extra virgin olive oil makes it sooo much better! It goes with everything from meat to pasta (we had it last night with some lasagna). And can I tell you something that sounds a bit strange? I actually make a batch of this to keep in the fridge. I always try to snack as healthily as I can because I have an absolute love of unhealthy snacks like chips but come 10.30am or 4pm I get a bit peckish and have a look at what I've got in the fridge. I usually grill vegetables and keep them in a box in my fridge to snack on. I find that when I'm hungry grilled broccolini, eggplant or zucchini or steamed green beans satisfy the need to chew on something. But lately when I have been making this borlotti puree I'd just get a teaspoon out and snack on that!
So tell me Dear Reader, are you a weird snacker? What do you like to snack on? Do you cook scallops very often?
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Grilled Scallops With Borlotti Bean Puree
Adapted from chef Danny Russo
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Serves: 6 (2 scallops each)
- 12 scallops in half shell
Borlotti Bean Puree
- 100g/3.5ozs. brown onion finely diced
- 400g/14oz tin Borlotti Beans from Europe
- 150g/5ozs tomato puree
- 2 cloves garlic – finely chopped
- 100ml/3.5flozs. extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
For Salsa Verde (this makes more than you will need but is great on grilled meat or seafood or even just on bread)
- 150ml/5flozs. extra virgin olive oil
- 25g/1oz fresh breadcrumbs
- 20ml/0.7flozs white wine vinegar
- 4 anchovy fillets finely chopped
- 25g/1oz. capers finely chopped
- 25g/1oz. cornichons finely chopped
- 1 bunch parsley, leaves only
- 1 hard boiled egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Step 1 - Make borlotti bean puree: Drain and rinse borlotti beans. Heat saucepan with 50ml/1.7flozs EVOO and gently sauté the garlic and onion slowly until soft and fragrant. Add tomato and sauté further for 2-3 minutes. Add borlotti beans and fold in and cook slowly for 3 mins. Place the mixture in a food processor with the remainder of the oil, salt and pepper and blitz until smooth and set aside.
Step 2 - Make salsa verde: Add all ingredients to food processor and blitz until smooth and creamy. Season to taste and set aside.
Step 3 - For Scallops: Heat grill to medium-high and place scallop shell side down, with a drizzle of olive oil and grill until scallops have just cooked through and have lost most translucence. Set aside with shell on serving platter. Gently prise the scallop from the shell with a sharp paring knife. Spoon borlotti puree onto shell, top with scallop and finish with some salsa verde.