Randi Baird

Serves 4

  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for sautéing
  • 1 pound carrots, scrubbed, carrot greens reserved
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons whole coriander
  • 2 tablespoons whole cumin
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 4 ounces (one stick) butter, plus 1 tablespoon
  • 2 cloves peeled garlic, lightly crushed
  • 8 ounces sea scallops
  • Canola oil
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1 1/2 cups pea shoots, tossed with 1/4 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper

1. In a large sauté pan with straight sides, warm 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Stir in whole carrots, covering in oil. Season with salt and pepper. Add coriander and cumin, and sauté for 5 minutes. Add chicken stock and stick of butter, and cover with lid or parchment paper and continue cooking, braising until fork-tender, about 8 to 12 minutes. Allow to cool, purée in food processor, and set aside.

2. Wash carrot greens thoroughly, dry, and roughly chop. In a sauté pan over medium heat, warm 3 tablespoons olive oil and quickly sauté greens with garlic. Cool by placing in refrigerator. Purée carrot greens in blender with 1/2 cup olive oil, and set aside at room temperature.

3. Season scallops with salt and pepper. Bring a heavy-duty sauté skillet to medium-high heat, and add enough canola oil to barely cover the bottom. Heat oil until it shimmers, then add scallops. Sear to caramel color on one side, about 3 minutes, flip and sear the other side, about 2 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon butter and thyme, and baste scallops with the mixture.

4. To plate: Gently reheat carrot purée and place in center of plate. Put 2 to 3 scallops atop the purée. Put carrot-top pesto around purée. Sprinkle with pea shoots.

This recipe was originally published with the article, Designing the Dining Experience.