Scallop & Pesto Crostini – GCC: Menu 20
As I perused the Illustrated Kitchen Bible cookbook looking for recipes to choose for this month’s Gutsy Cooks Club, the Scallop & Pesto Crostini immediately caught my attention.
Scallops, one of my favorite in seafood (particularly sea scallops), paired with basil pesto and a sun-dried tomato paste? Hmm, I thought this sounds yummy, don’t you think?
Not only is this dish simple to make, it’s great as an appetizer or light dinner with a salad.
Typically the scallops and pesto are served on toasted slices of Italian bread, such as Ciabatta.
However, my Sammy was busy working on our future herb & vegetable garden (he’s such a good guy), got hungry and ate half of the Ciabatta that I was supposed to use for not only this dish, but for the french toast I was LATE in making for breakfast…You can’t blame the guy, can you?
Therefore, I pan-fried some polenta until crispy, made my own basil pesto and sun-dried tomato paste. Cooked the scallops in olive oil, with some lemon and salt & pepper and in no time we had these.
These are a winner for us both…though we liked it on the polenta, next time we’ll have it on Ciabatta.
“Scallops are expensive, so they should be treated with some class. But then, I suppose that every creature that gives his life for our table should be treated with class.” Jeff Smith (The Frugal Gourmet)
- 12 slices Italian bread, such as ciabatta, about ¾ in (2cm) thick
- ½ garlic clove
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 6 sea scallops
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tbsp store-bought pesto
- 2 tbsp sun-dried tomato paste
- 12 fresh basil leaves, to garnish
Step 1 can be done in advance.
1. Preheat the broiler and position the broiler rack about 6in (15cm) from the source of heat. Broil the bread slices in the broiler until toasted golden on both sides. Rub one side of each slice with the garlic clove. Brush the garlic side of each slice with about 2 tsp olive oil.
2. Heat the remaining oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the scallops, sprinkle with the lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook for 2 minutes on each side, or until cooked through and tender; keep hot.
3. Spread one half of each toasted bread slice with pesto and the other half with tomato paste.
4. Cut each scallop in half horizontally and put 1 scallop half on top of each crostini. Grind black pepper over the top. Serve hot, garnished with basil leaves.