Sea Scallops with Sugar Snap Peas and Chervil

From Outstanding in the Field: A Farm to Table Cookbook by Jim Denevan with Marah Stets

Serves 4

  1. In a large, heavy-bottom nonstick skillet, heat about 2 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Add the sugar snap peas and season with salt. Cook, stirring, until crisp-tender, about 2 minutes. Transfer the snap peas to a plate and set aside.
  2. Wipe out the pan with a paper towel and place it back over medium-high heat with another 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
  3. Pat the scallops dry and season them with salt and pepper. Place half of the scallops in the hot pan, being careful not to overcrowd them. Cook without moving them until they are nicely browned and crisp, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the scallops and continue cooking them until they are cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes. The scallops should be slightly firm to the touch, with a think line of pale pink in the center when halved. Transfer the cooked scallops to a warm plate and repeat with remaining scallops, wiping the pan between batches and adding 2 more tablespoons of oil for each batch.
  4. When all of the scallops are cooked, leave the pan unwiped and add the white wine, stock, and any scallop juices that have accumulated on the plate. Simmer until the liquid has reduced by half, 2 minutes. Over very low heat, add the butter a few pieces at a time, swirling the pan continuously. When all of the butter has been incorporated, swirl in the lemon zest and chervil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Return the sugar snap peas to the pan and stir to coat with the sauce.
  5. Arrange the scallops on 4 warmed plates and divide the sugar snap peas and sauce among them. Serve immediately.