One plate/bowl meals on a lazy Sunday evening can be easy and super satisfying. Such was the case last night. We had guests to dinner on Friday eve, busy work days for us both on Saturday, and no island guests this week-end, so we came out to WestWard Sunday morning–hence the desire for a casual dinner. A super chill day ended with supper out on the deck sitting in the Adirondack chairs with a glass of wine watching the boats sail by. Spending a ton of time cooking was just not in the cards. That is where scallops come in. They cook nice and quickly. They have a ‘specialness’ quality to even a simple meal. But they can also get dressed up for company. Here is the tasty one plate meal I whipped up in no time.
Oven set to 400. Of course. Take out scallops and pat them dry with a paper towel and salt and pepper them quite liberally. I found small scallops at the grocer, but any size will do. Set them aside while you get things ready and this will take the chill off of them. Next cut up a head of cauliflower. Break up the florets (I know they are called florets for broccoli, assuming the same for cauliflower?) to quite small pieces onto a baking sheet. The smaller the better. I especially like all the little bits that break off. Use them all. The smaller pieces get even more caramelized. Drizzle with olive oil and salt. Mix around. Put into now hot oven. While these cook away, make a pot of rice. Any rice you like. We love jasmine rice, so that is what I made. But basmati, wild or brown would be excellent too. Things are now humming along. Shake the pan of cauliflower. Now finely chop up 2 cloves of garlic and a good amount of parsley. Check the cauliflower again. You want the pieces nice and caramelized. If done, take out and take off of baking sheet to help stop the cooking process. Set on a plate but do not cover. This will steam the cauliflower and you don’t want that as it will get them soggy. I know, I have made this mistake before. The cauliflower does not need to be hot when you serve it, so it is fine just sitting at the ready.
Have a sip of wine. Check the rice. Now you are ready to cook the scallops. Put a knob of butter in a sauté pan and let melt on medium high heat. Add that finely minced garlic you so carefully chopped up. Cook for about 30 seconds and then add the scallops. They will cook quite quickly. 3 to 4 minutes max. Move them around as they cook. If they are larger, they will take a bit longer. Once done take off the heat, add some of the chopped parsley and squeeze a lemon over all. The lemon juice will mix with the butter and garlic and parsley and help make a nice little sauce.
On the plate, add a big spoonful of rice. Next a smattering of the cauliflower and then top all that with the scallops. Lastly, a dusting of more parsley. So easy, one plate, and you are off to eat.