Thursday, March 15, 2012

Shrimp or Scallops with Lemon Dill Cream Sauce

Adding an egg yolk keeps the cream sauce from curdling in the face of the lemon juice and makes the dish even more luxurious. Makes 4 servings


  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 medium yellow onion, fi  nely chopped
  • 1 1⁄2 pounds large shrimp (about 20 per pound), peeled and deveined; 1 1⁄2 pounds cleaned sea scallops; or 1 1⁄2 pounds cleaned bay scallops
  • 2 tablespoons chopped dill fronds or 1 tablespoon dried dill
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 large egg yolk, lightly beaten in a small bowl, at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, preferably white pepper


  1. Melt the butter in a large skillet or saute pan set over low heat. Add the onion, reduce the heat even further, and cook slowly, stirring often, until translucent and golden, about 10 minutes.
  2. Add the shrimp or scallops and the dill. Cook, stirring constantly, for 20 seconds, just several good turns in the pot; then pour in the cream.
  3. Raise the heat to medium-high and bring the sauce to a simmer, stirring constantly. Cook until reduced by half, about 2 minutes. 
  4. Remove the shrimp or scallops from the sauce with a slotted spoon and place them on a plate.
  5. Continue to boil the cream sauce for 1 minute. Whisk about 1⁄2 cup of the cream sauce into the egg yolk until smooth. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk this combined mixture back into the remaining cream sauce in the pan.
  6. Whisk in the lemon juice, salt, and pepper; then return the shellfi  sh and any accumulated juices to the pan. Stir well, cover, and set aside off the heat for a few minutes, until the shrimp are pink and firm or the scallops are opaque.

Shrimp or Scallops with Orange Rosemary Cream Sauce: Substitute rosemary for the dill and 2 tablespoons frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed, for the lemon juice.

Shrimp or Scallops with a Grapefruit Tarragon Cream Sauce: Substitute tarragon for the dill; add 1 teaspoon fi  nely grated grapefruit zest with the tarragon. Substitute freshly squeezed grapefruit juice for the lemon juice.

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