The key to obtaining the perfect sear on the scallops is to cook them in a very hot pan. Fresh linguine has a silky texture that provides a nice contrast to the browned crust on the scallops. Add mixed greens tossed with a balsamic vinaigrette.
1 (9-ounce) package refrigerated linguine
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (about 1 1/2 ounces) finely grated fresh Romano cheese, divided
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 pounds sea scallops
4 lemon wedges
How to Make It
Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain pasta in a colander over a bowl, reserving 2 tablespoons pasta water. Combine pasta, reserved 2 tablespoons pasta water, 1/4 cup cheese, 1 tablespoon oil, chopped basil, and pepper in a large bowl; toss well.
Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a large cast-iron skillet over high heat. Sprinkle salt evenly over scallops; add scallops to pan. Cook 1 minute on each side or until golden.
Place 1 cup pasta mixture on each of 4 plates; top each serving with about 3 scallops and 1 1/2 teaspoons remaining cheese. Serve with lemon wedges.