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Rich flavors and varied textures make this dish absolutely incredible. I found this last week from an old Bon Appetit magazine that I kept and made it again... (yes, it's a stolen recipe, not one I've created but I HAD to share this for everyone to try) Lucious is the best way I could describe this. It's from February 2004 Valentine's issue and would be a great romantic meal for your and two other couples or half everything and make it for just the two of you, and have leftovers! (I made this with cremini's and shitake. I did NOT have "amontillado Sherry" but used a good quality dry sherry)
- 1 cup fresh breadcrumb, from french bread with crust
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- 9 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
- 12 ounces fresh chanterelle mushrooms (such as oyster, stemmed shiitake, or crimini, quartered if large) or 12 ounces other fresh wild mushrooms (such as oyster, stemmed shiitake, or crimini, quartered if large)
- 2 1⁄2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
- 1 cup chopped green onion
- 1⁄2 cup amontillado sherry wine
- 1⁄4 cup low sodium chicken broth
- 1⁄4 cup whipping cream
- 4 cups water (or more)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup polenta
- 1 lb bay scallop
- Preheat oven to 350°F Toss breadcrumbs with olive oil and parsley in medium bowl to blend.
- Spread onto rimmed baking sheet.
- Bake until golden and crunchy, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes.
- (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool completely. Store in airtight container at room temperature.) Melt 4 tablespoons butter in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add mushrooms and thyme.
- Sauté until mushrooms are tender, stirring occasionally, about 7 minutes.
- Add green onions; sauté 1 minute.
- Add Sherry; boil until slightly reduced, about 2 minutes.
- Add broth.
- Boil until reduced by half, about 3 minutes.
- Add cream; simmer until thickened, about 3 minutes.
- (Can be made 3 hours ahead. Cover and refrigerate.) Bring 4 cups water and 1 teaspoon salt to boil in heavy medium saucepan.
- Gradually whisk in polenta.
- Reduce heat to medium-low.
- Cook polenta until tender, adding more water as needed if too thick, and whisking frequently, about 20 minutes.
- Stir in 3 tablespoons butter.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Cover to keep warm.
- Reheat mushroom mixture.
- Melt 2 tablespoons butter in another large skillet over high heat.
- Add scallops and sauté until just translucent in center, about 1 minute.
- Stir scallops and juices into mushrooms.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Divide polenta among 6 plates.
- Spoon scallop mixture over polenta, sprinkle breadcrumbs over, and serve.
This recipe has a lot of potential. In general I liked it, but between the the polenta, the mushroom sauce, and the scallops it was very rich and a little one dimensional. I used dried wild mushrooms, which I reconstituted, along with a package of shitakes, because fresh wild mushrooms are so expensive. This worked well. I added more cream, sherry, and broth to increase the sauce and seasoned it with salt and pepper in response to the flavor problems that the other reviewer mentioned. I also used large scallops (what was available) which I seasoned with salt and pepper and seared in the butter. Flavor was not a problem, but I would serve it with a somewhat acidic vegetable dish- maybe spinach or green beens with a vinegar-based sauce and/or tomatoes to help balance out the richness and add a little flavor variation to the meal. This was pretty easy to prepare.
Interesting recipe, but not sure exactly how I felt about it. Definitely a different way to have scallops. The sauce definitely needs some salt and pepper, I did add more s/p, but maybe even a dash of cayenne would be nice. A squeeze of lemon juice might be nice too. Regarding ease, it's definitely easy to put together and really made a nice presentation. I'm not giving a star rating, because for me it was between 3 and 4, a little better than just average, but not quite up to the very good level for me. Hoping others will try it, they may like it better than I did.