Scallops with Creamed Corn and Pancetta

Corn, bacon and scallops make an incredible combination – sweet, salty and extremely satisfying. The scallops cook very fast, so wait until the last minute before cooking them. I always add them to the edge of the pan in a clockwise direction, starting at 12 o’clock, so by the time you have put them all into the pan, it’s time to turn the first ones that went in. It’s a simple technique for ensuring that all the scallops cook evenly.

Serves 2

Ingredients

200g fine green beans, trimmed

1 tbsp olive oil

8–10 scallops, with roe attached

1 tbsp butter

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the creamed corn

80g pancetta, finely diced

1 tbsp olive oil

1 onion, peeled and finely diced

2 corn on the cob

2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped

½ tsp paprika

200ml double cream

2 thyme sprigs, leaves picked

100ml water

2 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan cheese

50g sour cream

2 tbsp flat leaf parsley

Preparation

1Start by making the creamed corn. Place a small, non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. When hot, add the pancetta and cook for 2–3 minutes, or until the fat begins to render.

2Meanwhile, place a saucepan over a medium–high heat and add the oil. When hot, add the onion and cook for 5 minutes, or until softened.

3Remove the corn kernels from the cobs by standing each cob upright and running a sharp knife down the sides. Add a handful of the corn to the pancetta pan and cook for a further 2–3 minutes, or until the pancetta is crispy and brown.

4Add the garlic to the onion and cook for 1–2 minutes, then add the paprika, double cream, thyme leaves, water and remaining corn. Stir well and cook over a medium heat for 10 minutes, or until the corn has softened and the sauce has thickened.

5Meanwhile, cook the green beans in boiling salted water until tender. Drain and put to one side until needed.

6When the corn has softened, stir through the Parmesan, sour cream and chopped parsley and remove from the heat.

7Pour the olive oil over the scallops, season with salt and pepper and gently mix until well coated. Place a large, non-stick frying pan over a medium–high heat. When hot, carefully add the scallops and cook for 1–2 minutes on one side, then flip over, add the butter to the pan and cook for a further minute. Baste the scallops with the butter and remove the pan from heat.

8Spoon the creamed corn into shallow bowls and add the green beans. Top with the scallops and sprinkle with the pancetta and corn mixture before serving.

Time-saving tip

If you are really in a hurry, use tinned unsweetened corn instead of fresh corn kernels and reduce the cooking time by  5 minutes.

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