Prep 30 mins
Cook 20 mins
This recipe is from "The Cooking of Provincial France" from the Time-Life "Foods of the World" series of books from the late 60s/ early 70s. My mother had the whole series and I remember poring over those books endlessly as she would cook from them. This particular volume was authored by M.F.K. Fisher, nonetheless! My mom used to make this all the time when I was a kid, and I still love it to this day. I have also posted the "Provencale" version of Coquilles Saint-Jacques, which does not use cream or cheese. Gruyere is a very good type of Swiss cheese. If you can't find it just use the best Swiss you can find.
FOR THE SCALLOPS
- 1 1⁄2 cups chicken stock
- 1 1⁄2 cups dry white wine
- 3 small shallots, sliced
- 3 celery tops, with leaves cut tops into 2 inch pieces
- 4 fresh parsley sprigs
- 1 bay leaf
- 10 peppercorns
- 2 lbs whole bay scallops or 2 lbs sea scallops, cut into 1/2 inch slices
- 3⁄4 lb fresh mushrooms, sliced
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 5 tablespoons flour
- 3⁄4 cup milk
- 2 egg yolks
- 1⁄4-1⁄2 cup heavy cream
- 1⁄8-1⁄4 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄2 teaspoon pepper
- 1⁄4 cup gruyere cheese, grated
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- In a heavy 3 to 4 quart saucepan, bring the stock, wine, shallots, celery, parsley, bay leaf and peppercorns to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat, and simmer uncovered for 20 minutes.
- Strain this court bouillon through a sieve into a 10 to 12 inch enameled or stainless-steel skillet. Add the scallops and mushrooms, cover and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Transfer the scallops and mushrooms to a large mixing bowl. Quickly boil the remaining court bouillon down to one cup.
- SAUCE PARISIENNE:.
- In a 2 to 3 quart enameled or stainless-steel saucepan, melt 4 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. When the foam subsides, lift the pan from the heat and stir in the flour. Return to low heat and cook, stirring constantly, for a minute or two. Do not let this roux brown.
- Remove the pan from the heat and slowly pour in the reduced poaching liquid (the remaining court bouillon) and the milk, whisking constantly. Then return to hight heat and cook, stirring the sauce with a whisk. When it thickens and comes to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low and let it simmer slowly for 1 minute.
- Mix the egg yolks and 1/4 cup of cream together in a small bowl, and stir into it 2 tablespoons of the hot sauce. Add 2 more tablespoons of the hot sauce, then whisk the now-heated egg yolk-and-cream mixture back into the remaining sauce in the pan.
- Over medium heat bring the sauce to a boil, stirring constantly, and boil for 30 seconds. Remove from heat and season with lemon juice, salt and pepper. The sauce should coat a spoon fairly thickly; if it is too thick, thin it with more cream.
- Pour 2/3 of the sauce parisienne over the scallops and mushrooms and stir together gently.
- Butter six scallop shells or shallow 4 inch ramekins and set on a baking sheet or in a broiler pan, and spoon the scallop mixture into them.
- Top each portion with the remaining sauce and a sprinkle of the gruyere cheese.
- Bake the scallops in the top third of the oven for 10 to 15 minutes or until the sauce begins to bubble, then slide them under a hot broiler for 30 seconds to brown the tops if desired. Serve at once.