It's been said before that even in pea season, frozen peas are perfectly acceptable, and sometimes better than their fresh counterparts. Which means that this recipe is pretty much always in season. Like many of the dishes in Rozanne Gold's Radically Simple, this recipe packs a ton of flavor into a short ingredient list, and tastes like it was a lot more difficult to make than it actually was.
The key here is to cook the scallops with plenty of heat so that they develop good flavor before overcooking; once you splash the vermouth into the pan, it will lift all that flavor from the pan and deposit it right into the dish.
- 10 ounces frozen peas, thawed
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 16-20 medium-large sea scallops
- 1/4 cup dry vermouth
- Handful of pea shoots, mache, or microgreens
In small saucepan, cover peas with a minimum of water. Bring to a boil and cook 2 minutes, then transfer peas to blender, reserving cooking liquid. Add half of butter to blender along with 6 tablespoons cooking liquid, or more as needed. Puree until smooth and relatively thick, about 30 seconds. Season with salt and pepper.
In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon butter over high heat until foam subsides. Season scallops with salt and pepper and cook until golden and just cooked though, 2-3 minutes per side. Spread pea puree amongst 4 plates and top with cooked scallops.
Pour out excess butter from pan. Add vermouth to pan and turn heat to high; boil vigorously for 30 seconds then add remaining tablespoon butter and reduce further until syrupy. Pour sauce on scallops and top with pea shoots.