Friday, August 23, 2019

Ruth Reichl's Pasta and Scallops

This is a simple tasty pasta dish with fresh scallops. I started out looking for an apple recipe of some sort, and this popped up in Ruth Reichl’s book Comfort Me with Apples, but I wanted to save the apple recipe for my next post, since apples mean the harvest season is beginning (and my early apples in the front yard are ripening), but the scallop recipe was so easy (even with no apples!) that I decided to give it a try. It’s not plagiarized, I promise! Even Ruth acknowledges that the recipe passed through several hands before she got to it.

Pasta and Scallops


1 cup fish stock
1 cup heavy cream
½ pound scallops (bay or sea—your choice)
Salt and pepper
½ pound fresh linguine
1 Tblsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
Fresh herbs to garnish, if you want


Note: You should follow the steps in the order given. (1) make the sauce—it takes a little time to cook, but it will hold its heat while you prepare the other parts of the dish. (2) Sautee the scallops. They will still be tender, but they will cook a little while longer while you go on to the next step. (3) Cook the pasta (dry or fresh—dry will take a bit longer. (4) The final step: add the sauce (and lemon juice) to the hot pasta. The pasta must be hot in order to soak up the sauce, which is why it’s next to last. Then dish up, scattering the scallops over the top of the pasta for each serving.

Boil the fish stock in a large pan until it is reduced to 1/4 cup (this won’t take long). Add the cream and simmer until the mixtures is reduced to 1/2 cup (do not let it boil, and be patient!)

To cook the scallops, pat them dry and season them with salt and pepper. You can grill them quickly (I thought it seems kind of overkill to heat up a grill for 2-3 minutes of cooking, although I’m sure the flavor would be good). So for those of us who are lazy, lightly oil a saute pan and toss the scallops until cooked (1-2 minutes per side). Remove from the pan and set aside to keep warm.

Cook the linquine in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente. Drain in a colander. Return the pasta to the pot and toss with the cream sauce (you could also save a little of the pasta cooking liquid and add that) and lemon juice. Taste for flavoring.

Serve the pasta on a plate or shallow bowl, and top with the scallops and any remaining sauce. Add a few herb leaves or sprigs for color. (You could also add a sprinkling of cheese of you want.)

 Serves 4.

I should be giving you lovely pictures of coming books, but the next one won't be published until the fall, or maybe January. Or the holidays.

Besides, I'm just a wee bit distracted by moving and such, but that should be over in a month or so.

My Irish collage in Garryglass
(in Irish it's 
An Garraí Glas)
which means Green


  1. I forgot to introduce the cows in the field at the left (the majority of my neighbors). The belong to the Ellis family, which has been farming those fields (and the ones across the lane) for going on 200 years. I've met a couple of generations of them. Two grandsons were happy to show my friend and me a day-old lamb last summer (no, they're not usually born in August, but there was this ram . . .).

    1. My niece raises sheep and goats. Her matriarch goat was supposed to be finished with being bred due to age. She didn't agree and got over the fence to avail herself of the handsome male there.

  2. Looks lovely.
    If you're cooking bay scallops (the little ones) be sure not to over cook them! They turn into nasty chewy things when overcooked.

  3. Green Garden! What a lovely name! I have a question, Sheila. See that one scallop that looks sort of yellow? I don't cook them often enough to know if that's okay. I would have tossed that little guy. Yellow is safe? Not spoiled?

    1. I've always used them. I think it's just the difference of one scallop to another.

  4. Thank you for the recipe. Good luck on your moving project
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