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Seared Scallops with Grilled Ramps and Chimichurri
For this spring-themed appetizer recipe, use the best scallops you can find — preferably dry-packed diver scallops.
Ramps, if you've never had them before, are the wild cousin of leeks. They have a sharper, more onion-like flavor like scallions, and soft, edible green leaves.
Click here to see In Season: Ramps.
For the chimichurri
- 1/2 bunch cilantro leaves
- 1 bunch Italian flat-leaf parsley leaves
- 2 Tablespoons water
- 1/4 Cup capers
- 1 Teaspoon salt
- 1 Teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/4 Cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 Teaspoons lime juice
For the scallops
- 6 scallops, halved horizontally
- 1 Tablespoon canola oil
- 24 -30 ramps, trimmed
- Extra-virgin olive oil, to taste
- Salt and pepper, to taste
Calories Per Serving203
Folate equivalent (total)66µg16%
Ramp up your cooking: How to use these wild onions in 3 recipes
Ramp mania, otherwise known as ramp season, is a brief but glorious time in the spring as ramps make their very short but loud descent on the cooking scene. Whether you first notice them on restaurant menus — think ramp pasta, pizzas, pesto and more — or find yourself scrambling to the farmers market early in the morning before they sell out, ramps are a delicious addition to any dish.
Technically a wild onion, and also called a wild leek, ramps have a garlicky-onion flavor and in the allium family along with scallions, leeks and onions, and can be used pretty much interchangeably with them, though they have a bit of a sharper, stronger taste. Physically, they are more similar to a scallions in size, except that they have flatter, wider leaves.
The entire ramp, other than its root end, is edible, which lends itself to being used in a variety of dishes. Simply sauté them so that the leaves wilt and the bulbs become tender, grill or roast them for charred and crunchy leaves, then add them onto pizza, mix them into pasta or pickle them to stretch out their season. You can also mince the bulb as a base for a dish rather than (or in addition to) garlic or onions, and then use the leaves to make pesto so it can be frozen and enjoyed throughout the year.
In the following recipes, a ramp dressing that mixes the bulbs with apple cider vinegar and whole-grain mustard is used three ways: to dress an everyday salad, a sheet-pan chicken dinner with roasted ramps, garlic and lemons and a potato salad. Because of ramps' hyper seasonal availability, you can sub 2 scallions, white and light green parts thinly sliced, plus 1 small garlic clove, grated or minced, for the minced ramp bulbs in the dressing to make these recipes year-round.
The ramps lend a gentle garlicky-onion flavor to the dishes without overpowering them, so that the bright, mustardy dressing can also be spooned over lox and toast, poured over hot, crispy potatoes or served with roasted salmon or seared scallops.
If you’re unfamiliar with ramps, here are some quick tips for storing and preparing ramps:
Storing: Wrap the ramps in a damp paper towel and store in a plastic bag in the fridge for up to a week.
Prepping: Like scallions, ramps have a thin film on them that needs to be removed (you can do it after cooking too, but it’s easier before). Once you trim the very end of the bulb with the roots, the rest of the ramp is edible. Make sure to wash the ramps well, as dirt can hide in the crevices of the leaves as well as the bulb.
Sheet-Pan Chicken with Ramps, Lemon and Smashed Garlic
Ramps are used two ways in this recipe: First, the whole ramp is added to the sheet pan so that the leaves become crunchy, almost like kale chips, while the bulbs soften. The garlic and lemon rinds caramelize and are seasoned by the chicken as it roasts so that everything has a rich flavor to it. The dressing is then poured over the chicken and ramps, giving it that necessary final touch of acidity. Serving it with bread to soak up all of the pan juices is a must, and making little chicken, lemon, garlic and ramp sandwiches is also highly recommended.
Potato Salad with Ramp Dressing
More of a German-style potato salad, this recipe cuts the potatoes before boiling them, rather than after cooking to save time. I’m a firm believer that the potatoes need to be hot to properly absorb the dressing and find that cutting hot potatoes involves more work than I would like to do. As you’ll see, the dressing is increased in this recipe to make sure that it coats all of the potatoes. The ramp leaves are also added to the boiling potatoes during the last 30 seconds of cooking so that the raw taste is removed, and they add a pleasant texture and color contrast to the dish.
Everyday Salad with Ramp Dressing
This crunchy, tangy and creamy salad is balanced out by the ramp dressing and prime for variations and substitutions. Swap the toasted sunflower seeds for pumpkin, add in halved cherry tomatoes or crunchy radishes, depending on what you have in the fridge. It’s very forgiving and can be made year-round with the garlic-scallion dressing variation.
Scallops With Chimichurri Recipe
Chimichurri is an herb-based sauce from Argentina used to adorn and enhance a variety of different dishes, grilled meats, and fish above all. After some careful reflection, we've decided that chimi is pretty much the world's greatest condiment, turning bad food good and making good food great. Once you make it, you'll have a hard time not painting it on everything you come across: sandwiches, grilled vegetables, eggs.
It's probably worth your time to double the recipe and have a bit stashed in the fridge for when cravings strike, which will be often after you make this dish. In this meal, you get to pour your chimichurri on scallops (and just so you know, we think scallops are the most underrated of all seafood). They're incredibly lean, but with a sweet, meaty taste that makes them feel indulgent. Plus, they cook effortlessly in about 5 minutes.
So, let's review: indulgent, fast, and covered in chimichurri. In a word: yum. What are you waiting for? Get cooking!
Nutrition: 200 calories, 11 g fat (1.5 g saturated), 480 mg sodium
Seared Scallops with a Lemony Chimichurri
The lemony notes from the actual lemon (peel and all), as well as our Sicilian lemon balsamic, give this chimichurri sauce the absolute best flavor for seafood. Chimichurri is traditionally a grilled-meat sauce starring parsley and cilantro, but we were inspired by a recipe from Bon Appetit to serve it with our fantastic, jumbo-sized scallops. Serves 4 to 6 as a side.
- Half a lemon, seeded and roughly chopped
- 1 heaping Tbsp Sigona’s Sicilian Lemon White Balsamic
- 1 to 2 cloves garlic
- 2 Tbsp diced red onion or 1 shallot, roughly chopped
- 3/4 cup fresh parsley
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro
- 1/4 cup fresh chives
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1/2 cup Sigona’s Fresh Press Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 8 to 12 wild sea scallops
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 tsp. Sigona’s Fresh Press Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 tsp. unsalted butter
Directions: To a food processor, add the lemon (peel and all), balsamic, garlic and onion/shallot. Pulse until ingredients are roughly chopped. Add the herbs, salt and pepper pulse a few times. With the blade running, drizzle in the olive oil and process until ingredients are all about the same size and the oil in the mixture is emulsified. Taste adjust seasoning if needed.
Allow mixture to sit while scallops are prepared to allow the flavors to meld, at least 10 minutes.
Rinse and pat dry the scallops. Season both sides with salt and pepper. Add the oil and butter to a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the butter has melted and the combination is just starting to smoke, add the scallops, being careful not to over crowd the pan (work in batches if needed). Cook for just 1 minute 30 seconds each side, flipping once. Scallops should have a nice golden-brown sear that is about 1/4 inch deep on each side, and the middle should still be slightly translucent.
Transfer the scallops to a serving dish and serve the chimichurri on the side. Enjoy!
Shrimp and Scallops with Ramps
We punched up this classic scampi with ramps for an extra garlicky recipe. This shrimp and scallops with ramps is going to be a new springtime favorite.
This shrimp and scallops with ramps recipe is so delicious and easy to prepare and it works so well with crusty bread or served over pasta, such as spaghetti or even orzo.
You can prepare this with with shrimp and scallops or one or the other, scallops and ramps work wonderfully together as do shrimp and ramps, so either combination will work perfectly.
This recipe doesn’t hold back on the garlicky flavors between the ramps and the garlic, so you can reduce it if you don’t want to scare people away with your breath afterward, but honestly, the extra garlic is oh-so-worth it.
The broth for this recipe is very similar to what you might expect in a scampi but we add a little additional stock to thin it out some. You can add anywhere between 1 and 1/2 cups stock to 3 cups stock, depending on how much extra broth you want.
I think you will love this easy, garlicky seafood recipe. It’s so simple to prepare and looks so beautiful once it’s plated it up and will taste delicious with a slice of crusty bread or over cooked pasta. It’s truly a wonderful way to use up my favorite springtime aromatic!
Looking for other ramp recipes? Visit my archives!
If you made this recipe, please rate it and comment below! You can also follow me and share your creations by tagging me! I’d love to feature your #triedandtruerecipes creation on my feed!
Hy-Vee Recipes and Ideas
Serve as an appetizer or on a bed of pasta for a main course. Either way you look like an all-star when these hit the table.
Servings and Ingredients
Things To Grab
Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Trim scallops, pat dry with a paper towel, and season with salt and pepper.
Hyvee Culinary Expert TipHy-Vee Test Kitchen
Heat olive oil to almost smoking. Carefully add the scallops, making sure they are not touching each other. Sear scallops for about 1 to 2 minutes.
Flip scallops and add 2 tablespoons butter baste scallops with butter and continue to cook 1 to 2 minutes. The scallops should have a 1/4-inch golden crust on each side while still translucent in the center. Remove scallops from pan.
Add lemon juice and remaining 1 tablespoon butter to pan. Allow to heat through season to taste with salt and pepper.
Serve the scallops with roasted vegetables, plate the veggies and place scallops on top. I usually serve about 8 scallops per person. You can drizzle everything with fresh lemon juice if you want.
Drizzle the glaze over the top and sprinkle bacon bits as a garnish. I will leave a serving dish of glaze on the table as inevitably people want more during the meal. Bon appetit!
Seared Scallops in a Chimichurri Style Sauce
Seared Scallops in a Chimichurri Style Sauce Sauce was my husband Richard’s request for our Valentines day dinner this year. Let’s just say, he did not have to twist my arm. Today was the coldest day of this winter so far. So spending the good part of the day in the kitchen was the best place to be on such a bitter cold day.
There are a few variations to preparing a chimichurri sauce. Some people like them blended and with more olive oil. I like to chop all of my ingredients finely by hand. I also like adding sweet and hot chile peppers to mine. During the summer when I have a porch full of fresh herbs I prepare chimichurri quite often, sometimes adding fresh basil and tarragon into the mix.
Someday, I would love to enjoy dinner at an authentic Argentinian restaurant just so I could try some real chimichurri! I have to say, that cooking my loved ones favorite dishes brings me great joy. Making great food memories one plate at a time….
Seared Scallops in a Chimichurri Style Sauce
There are many variations of a chimichurri sauce. I like to chop mine fine by hand and add sweet and hot chile peppers to my recipe.
In food processor, combine all dressing ingredients except for oil. Pulse until combined. With processor running, slowly add oil set aside.
Heat 2 teaspoons oil in large nonstick skillet, over medium-high. Place half the scallops in the hot pan, seasoning lightly with salt and pepper sear for 1 to 2 minutes per side. Set seared scallops on a serving platter and repeat with remaining scallops, adding the remaining oil to the pan. Drizzle seared scallops with chimichurri dressing. Serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.
Approximate Nutrient Analysis per serving:
160 calories, 11 g fat, 1.5 g saturated fat, 25 mg cholesterol, 350 mg sodium, 4 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 0 g sugar, 10 g protein
How to Use Ramp Chimichurri
What are you going to do with this sauce?
You are going to serve this with steak (These Mexican Rib-Eyes would be great), maybe grilled or pan seared fish or seafood, possibly a roast of some kind. You are going to use it in the dressing of a pasta salad.
You are going to serve it instead of cocktail sauce for shrimp cocktail. You are going to spread just a little bit on a turkey sandwich, or add a little bit to your egg salad.
You are going to stir some into a pot of rice or risotto. You are going to add a spoonful or two to a vegetable soup. You are going to smear some under the skin of chicken pieces before roasting or grilling them.
You are going to use a little on some very good grilled or griddled slices of bread and top that with a fabulous cheese, like a goat cheese, or a sweet gorgonzola for the best crostini of the spring. You are going to mix this with some cooking water from boiling up a big pot of pasta and use it to toss with the noodles.
Chimichurri sauce is a classic Argentinean sauce, typically served with steak. In this variation, spring ramps are used as a substitute.Tweet This
My 12 year old said that this was one of the best sauces I have ever made. I found that as shocking as you probably did.