Herb Brown Butter Scallops with Champagne Risotto

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  • 6 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • kosher salt and pepper
  • 1 ½ cups arborio rice
  • ¾ cup dry champagne sparkling wine or white wine
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ¾ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese


  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 ½ pounds scallops
  • kosher salt and pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives



  • In a separate saucepan or stock pot, heat the stock on low until it’s warm.
  • In another saucepan or pot, heat the olive oil on medium-low heat. Stir in the garlic with a big pinch of salt and pepper. Stir in the rice. Cook, stirring often, to toast the rice for 3 to 5 minutes. The rice should be translucent.
  • Once the rice is translucent, stir in the champagne. Cook until the champagne has been absorbed. Add 1 cup of the warm stock, stirring continuously, until the stock is absorbed. Repeat again with 1 cup of stock, stirring until absorbed. Repeat this process with another 2 to 3 cups of the stock, until the rice is creamy and al dente. You want it to appear “hydrated” – and want there to be some liquid left when serving. This process should take about 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Stir in the butter until melted. Stir in the parmesan until melted. Taste the rice and season it with salt and pepper as needed. This will depend on how salty your cheese is, so I suggest adding as much as you need.


  • Heat a cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Pat the scallops completely dry with a paper towel and season them all over with salt and pepper.
  • Add the butter to the pan - it will almost immediately begin to brown in the cast iron. Place the scallops in a single layer in the pan. They cook quickly, so they probably only need about 2 minutes per side, depending on their size! I like to cook for 2 minutes, then flip and cook for 2 minutes more. Turn off the heat. Stir in the garlic. They will continue to cook for another minute or so. Sprinkle the chopped parsley and chives over the scallops.
  • To make extra brown butter (if you want, not required!), place the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Cook and let the mixture bubble, stirring occasionally, until brown bits begin to appear on the bottom. Once the brown bits appear, turn the heat off and continue to stir for about 30 seconds.
  • Scoop the risotto into a bowl and top with the scallops. You can serve this family style, with everything in one large bowl, or as separate servings. Drizzle more brown butter on top. If you’d like, you can sprinkle on some extra parmesan too!

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