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Pan Seared Scallops with Cauliflower Cream Soup

Winter days call for a warm, creamy soup and this cauliflower soup with rich bacon and cheese flavor is a perfect complement to seared sweet sea scallops.

Prep Time:  15 minutes

Cook Time:  45 minutes 

Serves:  4 -6

Yield:  9 – 10 cups of soup

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Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound thick-sliced bacon, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 1 medium onion (about 1 1/2 cups), chopped fine
  • 6 scallions, white and pale green parts separated from the green tops, thinly sliced
  • 4 - 5 medium cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 quart low-sodium vegetable stock, plus more as needed
  • 3 ½ cups cauliflower, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 4 bay leaves
  • ½ teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1 (15-ounce) container Frigo® Whole Milk Ricotta Cheese
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 6 large scallops, rinsed and patted dry
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • Frigo® Shredded 3-Cheese Italian Blend, garnish
  • red chili powder, garnish

Directions

Heat bacon in a large deep cast iron skillet or stockpot over medium-high heat, stirring constantly until bacon is completely crisp. Remove from skillet with a slotted spoon and set aside, leaving the fat in the skillet.

Add onions, the white and pale green parts of the scallions, and cook about 5 minutes, stirring constantly and scraping up browned bits from the bottom of the pan until onion is soft and translucent. Then, add minced garlic and allow to cook for an additional 3 minutes.

Add vegetable stock, cauliflower, bay leaves, and white pepper and continue to cook over medium heat.

Meanwhile, in a blender, blend Frigo® Whole Milk Ricotta and milk until smooth. Stir this into the stock mixture, and cook until cauliflower is completely tender, about 25 minutes.

When cauliflower is tender, remove bay leaves and, working in batches, blend soup in the blender until completely smooth. Return to pot and add salt and pepper to taste.

In a separate skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Season scallops with salt and pepper. Once the oil is sizzling hot, add the scallops to the pan. Sear until golden brown on one side, approximately 1 minute, and turn over. Sear on the other side for 1 minute until golden brown. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate to drain.

Divide the ricotta cauliflower soup into shallow bowls, place seared scallops on top and garnish with crisp bacon pieces, the reserved scallions, and Frigo® Shredded 3-Cheese Italian Blend.

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