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crab cakes, scallops with saffron rice and red pepper pilaf

March 20, 2009

I went to Billingsgate today and bought scallops and crab cakes.  It is expensive there.  The crab cakes were $17.64 for four cakes. But I like to pick the fish out from behind the glass, and I like the staff know their fish.  So it is worth a monthly trek.  

The crab cakes are easy to fry up in olive oil.  I made a dipping sauce of mayonnaise, stone ground mustard and fresh lemon juice to serve on the side.

The scallops came from the Barefoot Contessa’s Scallops Provencal recipe.  Look, another French recipe!  I’m getting so sophisticated here in semi-suburban Edmonton.  I was careful to buy fresh scallops so I wouldn’t succumb to the same fate as Spike on Top Chef, which his frozen scallop fiasco.  It cost me $11 for eight fat scallops.  I treated them like precious jewels.  This recipe is just terrific.  The sauce is garlicky and buttery, and the scallops were cooked to perfection.  I served them on a bed of sauteed garlic spinach.  


Speaking of precious jewels, my saffron stash is rapidly dwindling.  I’m very carefully choosing my saffron recipes.   I must not waste the saffron.  At $17 for a bottle of 6 servings, it is a valuable commodity in this house.  


This Saffron Rice and Red Pepper Pilaf from Bon Appetit magazine made good use of the saffron.   It was basmati rice prepared like risotto, and it ended up creamy and soft and a lovely colour:


Saffron Rice and Red Pepper Pilaf
-adapted from Bon Appetit 

5 Tablespoons butter
1 1/2 cups chopped red pepper
1/2 chopped onion
1 1/2 cups basmati rice
3 cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon crushed saffron threads
6 Tablespoons grated Parmesan 

Melt butter in large saucepan.  Add peppers and onion and saute five minutes.  Pour in rice and stir to combine.  Add chicken stock, salt, saffron.  Bring to a simmer, cover and cook on low heat for 18 minutes.  Take off heat and add Parmesan.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. March 20, 2009 8:45 pm

    You forgot to put down how much rice. 🙂

  2. March 20, 2009 8:57 pm

    Ooops, thanks…

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