Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Quilting Room and Pan Seared Scallops with Pea and Ricotta Puree

When all my littles and middles were here in the nest every room in this big old house was occupied.

Now, that one or two of them have flown the coop there is room to spare.

At one time, if I needed to sew or iron, I would set up my machine or board in the kitchen.

When I was done with the task at hand (or more likely, something else commanded my attention) I would disassemble everything, store it away and move on to the next "thing" that needed to be done. And so on and so on...

I now have the luxury of a sewing room. A place where I can set up my machine, the ironing board, my material cutting station, etc and leave it all intact. No tearing down or setting up required. Bliss. I sit down and begin to sew or cut my fabric for the quilt I am making and after an hour or two, I just get up, close the door and move on to whatever else is demanding my attention at the moment. No tear down. No set-up required.

I never would have guessed that something as simple as a sewing / quilting room would bring me so much joy.

I have just finished all the "nine piece" patches for the quilt. On Thursday, my friend Anne will give me a lesson in piecing together the top of the quilt. After the top piece is done she will show me how to add the batting and the back. From there, it will need to be hand quilted.. but I get ahead of myself. Before the next lesson, before the top is stitched and before anything else, I need to make dinner.

Pan Seared Scallops with Pea and Ricotta Puree (serves 4)

1 pound sea scallops
dashes of salt, pepper and paprika
8 ounces frozen peas, cooked according to package directions
1/2 cup fat free ricotta cheese
rind of 1/2 lemon
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Pat scallops dry with paper towels. Season with a sprinkle of salt, pepper and paprika. Set aside.

Yes, I know that's not a scallop on the left. The 16 year old does not like scallops - I cooked him Haddock instead (I spoil, therefore I am a mother)

Cook peas according to package directions using 1/4 cup water. When peas are done cooking, place in bowl of food processor, along with any liquid and process until almost smooth.

Add lemon rind, juice, 1 tablespoon butter and ricotta cheese. Season with a dash of salt and fresh ground pepper.

Process again using short bursts. Taste and adjust seasonings. Transfer to a microwavable serving bowl.

Heat oil and the last tablespoon of butter in large saute pan over medium high heat. Add scallops (and Haddock if you tend to spoil too) and saute for about 2 minutes. Turn and continue to saute for about 2-3 minutes more. Remember, food will release when it is done. If scallops are sticking, cook for another 30 seconds and try to turn again.

Warm the pea puree if necessary in the microwave for one minute. Stir.
Serve scallops immediately on a smear of pea puree.

A Cook's Notes: Veal, Halibut, Haddock, Chicken and Shrimp are all lovely served on top of this puree. For this meal, I served roasted fennel and tomatoes and a crusty loaf of french bread on the side. A chilled Sauvignon Blanc would round out this food beautifully. Bon Appetite!


  1. Just wondering when you are inviting me over for dinner?? ;0)

  2. Eternally - I just found out my brother is moving to Scotland. Meet me there and I'll cook you dinner!

  3. must be nice to have a room dedicated to these things... but I hate ironing so much I would never do it unless I could set the board out in front of the TV so I have something much more interesting to distract me from such a tedious chore... :p

  4. I love my sewing room! I stole some space in the office/store and made a sewing room where I spend endless happy hours that would otherwise be spent just waiting for a customer to come in.

  5. My stomach just growled AUDIBLY when I read this recipe! I just bought some shrimp and I have peas! Yay!

  6. yum..i am allergive to shellfish..so I may try this with my breaded ground chicken patties which I make with lemon and herbs...I bet it will taste great with this..
    About my pillows...they are a plain square, no piping..what I do to them is add alot of embellishments vintage buttons, ribbons, lace trims and velvets..I make them to look very old..
    I will let you know once I post one on my site!

  7. You food always looks better than mine.

    There are some advantages to an empty nest (or a greatly reduced nest...)

  8. Crazy - my board is set up in front of the window, the window overlooks a small pond and a few bird feeders which give me a lovely view with no reruns!

    Kathy - it's nice to have a little space to call our own isn't it?

    Buffalo - I'm with you. I LOVE scallops - especially the "day boat" scallops we get off the Jersey shore.

    Jen - the pea puree will be delicious (and pretty) with shrimp!

    Marlene - Chicken with lemon is an excellent choice. The flavors should compliment each other nicely. I can't wait to see some of your pillows. Vintage is the look I'm going for too!

    Nancy - oh, I don't know about that. From reading some of your comments and your posts you sound like a pretty Good Cook yourself!

  9. Great sewing room! And those scallops are making my mouth water! Have a great weekend, cher!

  10. someday i will have room to open up my sewing machine and create again, for now It lives in silence.

    That dish looks so delicious! you are always making me hungry!

  11. and might I add...frozen peas? who woulda believed it?

  12. So will the new house have a sewing room?


Wow. Thank you so much for taking the time to comment. I love feedback... what with being a cook and all. I will respond to your comments via email (if you do not have a "noreply" address or here, below your comment) As always, Bon Appetite!

Related Posts with Thumbnails