Monday, 22 October 2012

Baked scallops with béchamel









                                       The Sun Sets in the Venetian lagoon








Traduction: Coquilles saint-jacques gratinées
Traduzione: Gratin di capesante


I've been meaning to write about this recipe which came to me when I thought of my grandmother and how she serves us scallops with an ever so delicate béchamel.  We are extremely spoilt because these scallops are so delicious that is completely understandable that she buys them from her favourite supermarket 'Picard', a luxurious frozen foods brand.  I had always saw them at the Rialto fish market in Venice and thought, these would make a really special dinner party.   



Ingredients:

10 Scallops in their shell (or 2 per person, depending how many you're cooking for) 
1 Lemon

For Béchamel sauce:  3 tbs butter, 1 and a half tbs flour, 3 cups of milk, half a tsp of ground nutmeg, salt and pepper

To gratinate:  Breadcrumbs and parmesan  





To start, turn your oven on to 180 degrees C.  Place your scallops in a large oven tray and then preapre your béchamel:  in a medium sized sauce-pan, melt the butter on a low heat and once it is melted add the flour, stirring continuously to make sure no lumps form.  Little by little add the milk.  Add in the nutmeg,  yet never stop stirring the milk.  Once the béchamel has thickened, add a large pinch of salt and pepper.  Taste your sauce and see if it it to your taste.  Put some béchamel in each of the scallop shells and then sprinkle with breadcrumbs and some finely grated grana padano or parmesan.  

These make a very beautiful starter, serve on a bed of rocket and a very cold glass of white wine.