Scallops with Champagne

Click here for a PDF of this recipe without photos.

This was the second course of this weekend’s seafood dinner.  The only tricks to getting nicely-browned scallops are 1) getting the clarified butter as hot as your stove will allow, and 2) making sure they are absolutely dry when you add them to the pan.  The Bourdain recipe calls for champagne, so that’s what I used.  White wine would work just as well.  

Recipe adapted from Anthony Bourdain’s Les Halles Cookbook

  • 2 Tb butter
  • 1 shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup fish stock
  • ½ cup cream
  • 16 sea scallops
  • 2 Tb clarified butter
  • ½ cup champagne
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • Finely chopped chives

Cook the sauce – Melt 1 Tb of butter in a small saucepan.  Add the shallot and cook over medium-low heat for about 3 minutes.  Add the fish stock and bring to a boil.  Cook over medium-high until reduced to about half the original volume.  Add the cream and bring to a boil, then quickly reduce to a simmer.  Cook for 15 minutes.  Strain the sauce (to remove the shallots) and season with salt and pepper.

Cook the scallops – make sure the scallops are dry.  Season on all sides with salt and pepper.  Heat the clarified butter over high heat.  Once hot, add the scallops.  Cook for 3 minutes on one side, then cook the other for about 3 minutes.  At this point, remove the scallops to  a serving plate.

Pour out any butter that remains in the sauté pan.  Return to high heat and add the champagne, scraping up any fond with a wooden spoon or spatula. Turn heat down to medium high and reduce .  When done, whisk in the cream sauce and the remaining 1 Tb of butter.  Remove from heat and add the lemon juice and chives.  Pour the sauce over the scallops and serve right away.

1 Response to “Scallops with Champagne”


  1. 1 Dad October 3, 2010 at 11:12 AM

    Even better than it looks — even better than it sounds. This brought scallops back to the top of our lists


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