Whenever we get back to the Boston area, it's a priority to to have a meal at Legal Seafoods. I recently "re-discovered" this recipe buried in old newspaper clippings. I had tried to recreate it in the past but now know I was missing the most important ingredient - buttermilk. I made it again after posting the recipe so I have edited the original description. It's even better than I remembered, you might want to try just a dash (or more) of cayenne pepper. It's delightful !
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Place scallops in a bowl, season with salt and pepper, add thyme and buttermilk and toss to coat.
- Place scallops, with buttermilk, evenly in the bottom of an oven proof dish, sprinkle with cracker crumbs and top with melted butter.
- Bake for 20 minutes, squeeze lemon over scallops and serve immediately.
With all the great ratings, I had to try it. Overall the recipe had great flavor. I did make some changes. I had 2 1/2 lbs scallops and looking at the amount of cracker crumbs, I knew it would of been too much for just 2 lbs. But considering the extra 1/2 lb, I stuck to the cracker crumbs amount, but still cut back on the butter amount.
Sea scallops are key, and dry if possible. If you can't get dry fresh scallops, make sure to dry completely on a paper towel before using. This will help avoid extra moisture which some mentioned.
Next, I did use fresh thyme and plenty of pepper and some sea salt.
I mixed the cracker crumbs with the butter, only 1/3 cup, not 1/2 as stated and then topped the scallops. I felt there was less butter in the buttermilk at the bottom.
Also, I think it is important to get a pan that fits how many scallops you have. This way the crumbs stay on top vs the bottom of the pan. Mine turned out crunchy after 20 minutes at 425. I cooked them a bit hotter, but I had very very large scallops.
It was not my favorite dish as I couldn't taste just the scallops, but for those who like more sauce or seasoning on their seafood, I think it was very good.
But I think there are a few tricks to dish for a successful dish
Nice change from broiled/fried scallops. I changed the crackers from 2 cups down to 1. Used half the butter, and added old bay seasoning into the buttermilk/thyme mixture. Let it marinate for several hours then poured it into a glass baking dish and there you have it. Also put some fresh squeezed lemon juice over the top before baking. It was very tasty and gave the scallops a new twist. Will definitely make this again.
I can't believe that Legal Seafood serves this horrible dish! Do not waste your time on this awful recipe. The scallops tasted like they were baked in wallpaper paste. Also they were way over done!