This starter of pan seared scallops with chorizo are a real favourite in our house. We just love scallops and they pair beautifully with the salty spiciness of chorizo sausage.
They are served on a minted pea purée, which complements the sweetness of the shellfish and is easily made with frozen peas.
The whole dish can be made in 15 minutes from start to finish, which makes it perfect for entertaining guests or a special meal at home.
For this dish you don't need a long list of ingredients.
You can use fresh king scallops with the orange roe attached or use frozen scallops if you prefer. If you are using fresh scallops make sure they are thoroughly cleaned before cooking.
At the moment I tend to buy my fish online and it arrives frozen. This is a great way to buy fish and seafood as it is much cheaper and more convenient.
The important thing with frozen or fresh scallops is to rinse them well and then lay them on several sheets of kitchen paper. Use more sheets to pat them dry on top too. This is a really important step before you start cooking so don't skip it!
The other main ingredients is chorizo sausage. I like to keep a chorizo ring in the fridge as it has a long shelf life and goes well in so many dishes, from paella to pasta and salads.
For this recipe it's not necessary to use fresh peas. Frozen peas are perfect, need minimal cooking and keep their luscious green colour.
I have mint growing in the garden to use in this recipe, but if you can't find fresh mint use mint sauce, made for lamb dishes. Chop it finely.
The next step is cooking frozen peas. Boil the peas in water for 2 minutes and then drain and plunge into cold water. This will make sure they keep their vibrant colour.
Put the peas in a blender or processer and blend with the mint, crème fraîche and salt. You could even use a potato masher.
If you prefer your purée thinner you can add some of the cooking water from the peas or more crème fraîche. Make it as smooth or chunky as you like. Set aside.
Chop some Chorizo into small cubes and fry in a pan for 2 or 3 minutes until coloured and crisp. Remove the chorizo with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.
Use the oil from the chorizo pan and add the butter over a medium high heat.
When the butter is foaming, season the scallops and add to the pan for about a minute on each side. I find it's easier to use tongs to lift the scallop carefully to check if it has a good crusty sear. Aim for crusty on the outside but with some give when squeezed.
Be careful not to overcook the scallops as they will become tough.
Serve the scallops on the peas and sprinkle over the chorizo cubes. Drizzle over some truffle oil too if you like. Serve immediately with some crusty bread.
Scallops on peas with Chorizo....what could be better?
In France a celeriac purée is very popular and is one of my favourites.
Try parsnip, cauliflower or sweet potato for a change.
Instead of chorizo try a different spicy sausage or smoked bacon lardons.
Black pudding is particularly good with scallops. Serve it cubed, like the chorizo or sliced and fried. Grilled pancetta, serrano or streaky bacon also work well.
You could make this dish with prawns or with a piece of cod or monkfish for a main course.
It's easy to make the puree in advance and warm it gently before serving.
The scallops should be cooked immediately before eating or they will become tough and chewy when they are reheated.
More fish recipes
Scallops with Chorizo and Pea Purée
- 12 cleaned scallops
- 600 g frozen peas
- 2 tablespoon creme fraiche
- 2 tablespoon fresh mint chopped
- 50 g Chorizo chopped
- truffle oil optional
- Cook the peas in boiling water for a few minutes until tender and drain.
- Blend the peas with the creme fraiche and season to taste.
- Heat a frying pan over a medium heat and fry the Chorizo until coloured then set aside.
- In the Chorizo pan add the butter and heat over a medium/high heat before adding the scallops for 1 minute each side.
- Pile the scallops over the pea puree then scatter Chorizo over. Drizzle a little truffle oil over if liked.
Disclaimer: The nutritional information provided is approximate and is calculated using online tools. Information can vary depending on various factors, but we have endeavoured to be as accurate as possible.
Detailed instructions for this recipe, including step by step photographs, hints and tips, can be found in the main article.