Pan Roasted Sea Scallops with Winter Squash, Toasted Walnuts and Brown Butter Sherry Vinaigrette
1 pound cleaned sea scallops
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted whole butter, plus a little to grease the sheet pan
8 ounces raw walnuts, shelled
1 head escarole lettuce, washed and chopped
4 ounces dry sherry
1 acorn squash, peeled and diced
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spread raw walnuts on a greased sheet pan and toast in the oven until brown, not burned, about 10 minutes.
2. Heat a medium-size sauté pan on the stove over medium heat, and add the olive oil. When it is hot, add the scallops, a little salt and pepper, and the garlic. Sauté for about 2 minutes on each side, turning only once. Scallops are best when they are left slightly undercooked.
3. Remove the scallops from the pan; set aside and keep warm.
4. Return the pan to the flame and turn the heat to high. Add the butter, the squash and the chopped escarole lettuce, again adding a little salt and pepper. Sauté until the vegetables are tender, then add the walnuts.
5. When the butter in the pan has become brown, it will add a nutty flavor to the vegetables. Add the sherry and coat the vegetables by tossing the pan briefly.
6. To plate, place the nuts and vegetables on a warm dish, topped with the scallops. Finish by drizzling the brown butter and sherry on top.