Seared Scallops and Asparagus with a Saison Pan Sauce

Mmmm, scallops ♥! I wanted to make scallops with a beer sauce and asked in my last post for some beer suggestions. Someone recommended Le Merle from North Coast Brewing. I had never had it before and I love saisons so I decided to give it a shot. It's got some citrus and spicy yeast that works well with seafood, along with some light caramel notes to complement the seared scallops.

To prepare the dish, I first cooked my asparagus in a pan with butter for about 10 minutes. I seasoned them with salt, pepper, and a little lemon zest. After debearding my sea scallops I sprinkled them with salt and pepper. I seared them for about a minute per side in a hot pan with oil and butter. After removing the scallops, I made a simple pan sauce. I turned the heat off and poured in some of the beer, scraping up all the good stuff from the bottom of the pan. I added a little bit of cream, butter, and salt and it was good to go. I poured a glass of Le Merle to go alongside and enjoyed (but not before taking some pictures).

The beer worked pretty nicely in the dish. It made a nice tasty sauce and it played off of the lemon zest in the asparagus well. For the pairing I might have preferred something a little lighter. The beer was more boozy than I expected (7.9% abv) so it was a bit too strong to pair with the light dish. But overall, very enjoyable. My family loved it. They were fighting over the last few scallops. Thanks for the suggestions! Keep them coming :)

Mother's Day Dinner

I made dinner for my mom last night for mother's day. The menu included: some absolutely delicious pan seared scallops with asparagus, lemon mushroom risotto, and a strawberry souffle with chocolate mousse on top. There was no beer involved in the dinner, but I wanted to share anyway. I actually used white wine in both the risotto and scallops. Hey, I've gotta cook with different things once in a while. 

This was my first time making risotto. I really enjoyed the process of preparing it. It was actually relaxing watching the broth get absorbed into the rice as I stirred. I used some lemon juice, lemon zest, oyster mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms, and baby bella mushrooms in my risotto. Came out really yummy.

The scallops were simply seared in butter and olive oil with salt and pepper. After removing the scallops, I added some white wine into the pan and made a tasty sauce. This is one of  my favorite ways to make a sauce. You get the most flavor when you make it right where the food was cooked. A little beer (or wine), some butter, salt, garlic, and milk. Hard to get a better sauce than that. The asparagus were pan seared with butter, salt, garlic, and a squeeze of lemon juice. Perfect. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get a picture of the scallops.

Both of these dishes are now at the top of my to cook with beer list. I think the right beer could make these extra interesting and tasty, so look out for that soon. If you have any suggestions for a beer I should use for them, or beers you would like to see used in any recipe, let me know with a comment! I don't mind a challenge :)