Seared Scallops with Corn Chowder
PAIR WITH: Hallberg Blanc
White wines are often paired with fish because of their higher acidity, and our Hallberg Blanc is no exception. The acid in the wine gives a lovely tension and focus that lifts the flavors of both this blanc of Pinot Noir and this dish.
Pairing recommended by our Assistant Winemaker Keith Hammond.
- 3 ears corn (trim off the corn kernels and save the cobs)
- 1 cup frozen yellow corn kernels
- 8oz (1 cup) clam juice
- 1 tsp Better than Bouillon seafood base
- ½ cup sherry or vermouth (or a combination)
- 1 tsp avocado oil
- 1 cup leeks (white and pale green parts only), sliced and well rinsed
- 1 small shallot, minced
- ½ medium Vidalia onion, minced
- 1 rib celery, diced
- 2-3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 2 cups 2% milk
- 2-3 potatoes, peeled and diced
- ½ tsp Worcestershire sauce
- ¼ tsp dried thyme (2 tsp if fresh)
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- ⅛ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 lb (about 2 cups) bay scallops
- 2 cups half & half
- 1-1½ tsp salt, or to taste
- 1-1½ tsp freshly ground pepper, or to taste
- 4 thin slices prosciutto
- Fresh chives, chopped
- Fresh basil, chopped
- Set aside one scallop for each serving. We’ll get to those later.
2. In a large pot, simmer the corn cobs in clam juice, bullion, and sherry for 7 minutes. Remove cobs and set the liquid aside in a medium bowl.
3. In the same pot, sauté the leeks, shallot, Vidalia onion, and celery on low for 15 minutes.
4. Stir in garlic, clam-and-cob liquid, milk, potatoes, Worcestershire sauce, thyme, cayenne, and nutmeg; simmer for 5 minutes.
5. Add corn kernels and scallops; simmer for 10-15 minutes.
6. Add half & half to the pot and simmer for 5 minutes.
7. Add salt and pepper to taste, then set aside and off the heat.
8. Heat oven to 350°F and prepare a baking sheet with cooking spray, then bake the prosciutto for 10 minutes.
9. While that bakes, sear the scallops set aside in step 1 in oil on both sides.
10. For each bowl of chowder, crumble one piece of prosciutto on top, then top with one seared scallop in the center of the bowl, and garnish the chowder with chives and basil to taste.
If it’s a sweeter kind of corn, add juice from 1-2 lemons to taste.