Although this dish is quick and easy with few ingredients, its luxury comes from truffle oil-enhanced mushrooms. The crisp crust on the scallops renders a textural contrast to the tender mushrooms. To get the best crust, be sure your skillet is very hot, and only turn the scallops once during cooking.
Cooking Light FEBRUARY 2005
Heat 2 teaspoons olive oil in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper; sauté 2 minutes or until mushrooms begin to soften. Add wine, thyme, and juice; reduce heat to low, and cook 5 minutes or until mushrooms are tender. Pour mushroom mixture into a bowl. Stir in truffle oil; cover and keep warm.
Wipe pan dry with paper towels. Pat scallops dry with paper towels; sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Place cornmeal in a shallow dish; dredge scallops in cornmeal. Heat 2 teaspoons olive oil in pan over high heat. Add scallops; cook 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Serve over watercress and mushroom mixture.
Wine note: No matter how they're prepared, scallops have a flavor that's unique, complex, and earthy, while their texture is almost creamy. And while all sorts of white wines work well, there's a European classic that's not to be missed: albariño. Albariños are fresh, superlively, and have light peach, citrus, and almond flavors. Try Burgans Albariño 2002 (Rías Baixas, Galicia, Spain), $12. -Karen MacNeil
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