Pan Seared Scallops with Caramelized Onion Alfredo

Pan Seared Scallops with Caramelized Onion Alfredo

Let’s talk about fresh pasta.

I feel I should start with a warning. Tasting fresh pasta in all its tender, rich goodness can be a game changer. There may be no turning back. It is now, hands down, my favorite comfort food and a weekly occurrence in our home.

If you want to try to make your own pasta, let me encourage you to give it a try! Give yourself a little extra prep time and a give the kids an extra episode of Wild Kratts. You can find additional tips and techniques here. And, as with many other things, the more you make pasta at home, the more tricks you learn and the faster the process becomes.

I have been grinding grains for a couple of years, but had never successfully found my freshly ground grain to be a consistency suitable for pasta. Either my pasta was too dense or too dry or just did not hold together well enough to be rolled out and cut. I kept a bag of unbleached flour on hand just for pasta.

The WonderMill has changed that though. It has taken some trial and error, (and to be honest, a fair bit of frustration), but I have finally been able to consistently make delicious homemade pasta with freshly ground grain.

This opens up so many possibilities for different variations on homemade pasta. I used spelt grains for this recipe, but other grains could certainly be experimented with as well.

spelt berries & wondermill

If scallops are out of your budget or simply not appealing to you, they can be substituted for roasted chicken or shrimp.

Also, preparing each component of the pasta at once is doable because the steps are staggered, but the process will take around an hour to an hour and a half. If you don’t have the time or want to break up the process, the sauce and/or the pasta can be prepared earlier that day or the day before.

Pan Seared Scallops with Caramelized Onion Alfredo

Pan Seared Scallops with Caramelized Onion Alfredo

Ingredient List

Pasta:

  • 2-3 C spelt flour
  • 3 eggs

Sauce:

  • 1/2 onion, sliced thin
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 4 minced garlic cloves
  • 2 Tbsp flour
  • 1 C whole milk
  • 1/2 C heavy cream
  • 1 C shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 3 Swiss chard leaves, ribs removed and chopped
  • 2 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 8-10 fresh scallops
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • salt and pepper

Method

1. Dump 2 cups of flour onto a clean work surface or mixing bowl. Make a well in the middle. Crack the eggs into the well. Mix the flour and eggs together with a fork. Once the dough is starting to come together, use your hands to press the dough together. Knead dough for 5 minutes. Divide dough into 6 balls and cover with plastic wrap. Let the dough rest while you prepare your other ingredients.

making pasta
2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat. , add onions and salt and stir to coat. Cook on low for twenty minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions have darkened and are quite soft.

caramelizing onions
3. While the pasta is resting and the onions are caramelizing, prepare the rest of your ingredients. Fill a stockpot with water and set on the stovetop over high heat to bring to a boil. When the water comes to a boil, turn the heat off and let it sit with the lid on until you’re ready to boil the pasta. Gather the remaining ingredients for the sauce (garlic through Parmesan).
4. Once the onions are caramelized, add the 4 cloves of minced garlic. Cook for 30 seconds until fragrant. Stir in 2 Tbsp flour, then slowly pour in the milk and cream while mixing with a whisk to blend. Immediately transfer the onion and milk mixture to a blender and blend until smooth. Return to saucepan. Heat over medium-low heat until thickened, about ten minutes, stirring occasionally. After ten minutes, add the Parmesan cheese. Stir the sauce until the cheese is melted and fully incorporated. Reduce the heat to keep the sauce warm until the pasta is ready to be assembled.

caramelized onions and garlic
5. While the sauce is thickening, roll out the pasta one ball at a time until very thin. (On my machine, I roll it out to the 7th setting).  If the pasta is sticking, dust it with additional flour. Set aside each flat piece of pasta to dry a little. Finish rolling out each ball of pasta.

6. Start preparing the scallops. Remove the hard tab from the side of each scallop. Place the scallops on a clean dish towel and blot dry. Let the scallops rest on the towel for 10 minutes. Cooking the scallops will be one of the last steps.

7. In a nonstick skillet, heat a tablespoon of oil over medium heat. Add 2 minced garlic cloves and stir, cooking for 30 seconds. Add chopped Swiss chard and stir well to evenly coat the Swiss chard with the garlic and oil. Cover the pan and cook for 5 minutes. Remove the Swiss chard to a clean bowl and set aside until the pasta is ready to be assembled.

8. Once the sheets of pasta have dried a little but are still pliable, cut them into linguine-size noodles. (If the noodles stick together when cut, they may need a few more minutes of drying time).

cutting noodles

9. Return the stockpot of hot water to a boil. Add a teaspoon of oil and a teaspoon of salt. Cook the noodles in the boiling water for three minutes or until the noodles have reached the desired tenderness. Drain and set aside.

10. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in the nonstick skillet over high heat. Salt and pepper the scallops on both sides. Place in skillet and cook for 2 minutes, until a dark golden crust has formed on the bottom of each scallops. Flip the scallops over with a pair of tongs, add 1 tablespoon of butter and continue to cook for 2 more minutes, tilting the pan and basting the scallops with butter a couple of times. The scallops are done when the the sides are firm and the meat is opaque. Remove to a clean plate.

pan seared scallops

11. Assemble the pasta! In a large serving bowl, combine the pasta, the sauce, and the Swiss chard. Toss well to incorporate. Place the scallops on top. Garnish with additional grated Parmesan cheese.

Pan Seared Scallops with Caramelized Onion Alfredo

Pan Seared Scallops with Caramelized Onion Alfredo
 
Author:
Cuisine: Seafood Pasta
Serves: 4 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 2-3 C spelt flour
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ onion, sliced thin
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 6 minced garlic cloves, divided
  • 2 Tbsp flour
  • 1 C whole milk
  • ½ C heavy cream
  • 1 C shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 3 Swiss chard leaves, ribs removed and chopped
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 8-10 fresh scallops
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • salt and pepper
Instructions
  1. Dump 2 cups of flour onto a clean work surface or mixing bowl. Make a well in the middle. Crack the eggs into the well. Mix the flour and eggs together with a fork. Once the dough is starting to come together, use your hands to press the dough together. Knead dough for 5 minutes. Divide dough into 6 balls and cover with plastic wrap. Let the dough rest while you prepare your other ingredients.
  2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat. , add onions and salt and stir to coat. Cook on low for twenty minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions have darkened and are quite soft.
  3. While the pasta is resting and the onions are caramelizing, prepare the rest of your ingredients. Fill a stockpot with water and set on the stovetop over high heat to bring to a boil. When the water comes to a boil, turn the heat off and let it sit with the lid on until you're ready to boil the pasta. Gather the remaining ingredients for the sauce (garlic through Parmesan).
  4. Once the onions are caramelized, add the 4 cloves of minced garlic. Cook for 30 seconds until fragrant. Stir in 2 Tbsp flour, then slowly pour in the milk and cream while mixing with a whisk to blend. Immediately transfer the onion and milk mixture to a blender and blend until smooth. Return to saucepan. Heat over medium-low heat until thickened, about ten minutes, stirring occasionally. After ten minutes, add the Parmesan cheese. Stir the sauce until the cheese is melted and fully incorporated. Reduce the heat to keep the sauce warm until the pasta is ready to be assembled.
  5. While the sauce is thickening, roll out the pasta one ball at a time until very thin. (On my machine, I roll it out to the 7th setting). If the pasta is sticking, dust it with additional flour. Set aside each flat piece of pasta to dry a little. Finish rolling out each ball of pasta.
  6. Start preparing the scallops. Remove the hard tab from the side of each scallop. Place the scallops on a clean dish towel and blot dry. Let the scallops rest on the towel for 10 minutes. Cooking the scallops will be one of the last steps.
  7. In a nonstick skillet, heat a tablespoon of oil over medium heat. Add 2 minced garlic cloves and stir, cooking for 30 seconds. Add chopped Swiss chard and stir well to evenly coat the Swiss chard with the garlic and oil. Cover the pan and cook for 5 minutes. Remove the Swiss chard to a clean bowl and set aside until the pasta is ready to be assembled.
  8. Once the sheets of pasta have dried a little but are still pliable, cut them into linguine-size noodles. (If the noodles stick together when cut, they may need a few more minutes of drying time).
  9. Return the stockpot of hot water to a boil. Add a teaspoon of oil and a teaspoon of salt. Cook the noodles in the boiling water for three minutes or until the noodles have reached the desired tenderness. Drain and set aside.
  10. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in the nonstick skillet over high heat. Salt and pepper the scallops on both sides. Place in skillet and cook for 2 minutes, until a dark golden crust has formed on the bottom of each scallops. Flip the scallops over with a pair of tongs, add 1 tablespoon of butter and continue to cook for 2 more minutes, tilting the pan and basting the scallops with butter a couple of times. The scallops are done when the the sides are firm and the meat is opaque. Remove to a clean plate.
  11. Assemble the pasta! In a large serving bowl, combine the pasta, the sauce, and the Swiss chard. Toss well to incorporate. Place the scallops on top. Garnish with additional grated Parmesan cheese.

 

About Lisa @ This Pilgrim Life

I'm Lisa from This Pilgrim Life (www.thispilgrimlife.com). I'm married to my best friend and a mother to three great kids. Cooking is one of my favorite pastimes and bread is my love language. I am always learning new ways to make healthy food delicious and how to get my children involved in the kitchen.

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