Seared Scallops with Honey Buttercup Squash Puree

Fall is a perfect time of year to make this beautiful dish as many varieties of squash are readily available.  I chose Buttercup Squash for its mild buttery flavour and smooth finish  but you could easily use acorn, butternut, hubbard etc.  I paired it with our blueberry honey, however, any of our delicious honey would work with this recipe



To make the puree:  Cut the squash into pieces (quarters), seed and scrape out the stringy bits.  Place in a baking pan and add ½ cup of water, cover with foil and roast at 350 F. until very tender (usually about an hour).  Remove from oven, let cool, scrape the cooked squash from the skins and puree in a blender adding water as needed to make a smooth puree.  Depending on the size of your squash, add 2 Tbsp.  honey, or more to your taste, butter, salt and pepper.  Keep warm until ready to plate.

Heat a cast iron pan or heavy skillet with a couple of tablespoons of vegetable oil (prefer an oil with a higher smoke point than olive oil) and a tablespoon of butter until just under smoking.  Dry and season (salt and pepper) 3 scallops (I use 3 per serving) and place in hot pan.  Using your fingers or a spatula, press the scallops into the pan to sear evenly.  Cook for 2 minutes per side and remove from pan.

Place a mound of the honey squash puree on each plate or if you’re feeling fancy, use the back of a spoon and spread a smear across the plate.  Place 3 scallops on each plate and garnish with fresh sage if desired.

This makes a lovely first course or main course when served with green beans and a salad.



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