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Sautéed Sea Scallops with Browned Butter

Serves 4

Scallops, like most seafood, are best when simply prepared. This recipe, using browned butter to add lots of flavor without masking the delicate flavor of the scallops, is a quick, easy and delicious main dish for a special occasion or entertaining. It can be made in any amount needed.


Mix together flour, salt and pepper on a plate. Pat the scallops with paper towels to remove excess moisture. Dredge each scallop in the flour mixture to lightly coat all sides.

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat until lightly browned, being careful not to burn. Increase heat to high and add the scallops, one at a time. (If the pan is not large enough, do this in batches.) Sauté until the first side is nicely browned. Turn and sauté the other side until brown. Remove from pan and serve immediately, drizzled with some of the butter from the pan.

Notes: How long it takes for the scallops to cook depends on the size. If they are very large, sometimes called 'colossal', you might need to reduce the heat to medium-high so that they do not brown too quickly. If in doubt about doneness, cut one scallop to check. It should be opaque inside, but still very tender and moist.