Sweet scallops, intense sun-dried tomatoes, and rich, crunchy pine nuts offer a rather incredible blend of textures and flavors. Don't cook the scallops too long or they'll toughen. If you have bay rather than sea scallops, use them whole and sauté them, stirring, for no more than two minutes in all.
1/4 cup pine nuts
3/4 pound linguine
6 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 pounds sea scallops
1/2 cup drained oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
6 cloves garlic, minced
6 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Scant 1/2 teaspoon dried red-pepper flakes
How to Make It
Heat the oven to 350°. Toast the pine nuts in the oven until golden brown, about 8 minutes.
In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the linguine until just done, about 12 minutes. Drain the pasta.
Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large nonstick frying pan over moderately high heat until very hot. Season the scallops with 1/8 teaspoon salt. Put the scallops in the pan and sear until brown on the bottom, 1 to 2 minutes. Turn and sear until brown on the other side, 1 to 2 minutes longer. Remove the scallops and cut them into quarters.
In the same pan, heat the remaining 5 tablespoons oil over moderate heat. Add the tomatoes, garlic, 2 tablespoons of the parsley, the red-pepper flakes, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Toss with the pasta, scallops, pine nuts, and the remaining 4 tablespoons of parsley.
Reconstituting Dry-Packed Sun-Dried Tomatoes: You can use dry-packed tomatoes in place of the oil-packed ones. To reconstitute, put them in a bowl with boiling water to cover well. Let sit for five minutes and then drain.
Wine Recommendation: Many think tocai friulano is northeastern Italy's finest white wine. Full and rich enough to partner the scallops, it also has enough crisp acidity to stand up to the tomatoes. The wine's nutty taste makes it a natural with this dish.
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