Cooking with Pete and Barb Marczyk: squid ink pasta with scallops
Pete Marczyk and Barbara Macfarlane do not leave their work behind when they leave Marczyk Fine Foods and head for their great old Denver house with a spacious kitchen. They often bring some of their market's choicest ingredients home with them and cook up a feast.
"Pete and I just spent a weekend in New York City," reports Barb, "and we did what any good American would do: We ate. And ate and ate and ate." Their last dinner before returning home was at Esca, Mario Batali's seafood and southern Italian restaurant in Hell's Kitchen. "Pete had the spaghetti Neri and couldn't stop thinking about it until he shamelessly reverse engineered it for our dinner last night -- and it was was lovely," she notes. Barb recommends pairing the pasta with a bottle of Cantina Barbara Nero d'avola.
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Squid ink pasta with seared sea scallops
½ pound squid ink spaghetti, long cut, cooked according to directions
1 large garlic clove, peeled and minced
1 large Serrano pepper, seeds and veins removed and sliced into thin coins
2 plump tomatoes peeled, seeded, diced and scored at the top and bottom with an "X" (See note below)
¼ cup good olive oil
I bunch scallions, whites removed and greens chopped
Eight sea scallops
Sea salt to taste
Meyer lemon olive oil for drizzling (available at Marczyk's)
1. Add 1/2 of the olive olive oil to a large skillet and sear the scallops over medium-high heat until they're golden, about 2 minutes per side. Set aside.
2. Pour remaining olive oil in a deep saucepan and sweat the garlic on low heat, being careful not to burn or brown it.
3. Add sliced Serrano chiles and scallions and sauté on low heat for 3 minutes, being careful not to brown the garlic.
4. Add tomatoes, and just as they start to yield liquid, add the cooked pasta from the pot.
5. Gently combine pasta with sauce.
6. Plate pasta and top each portion with seared scallops and a drizzle of Meyer lemon olive oil.
*Drop the tomatoes into boiling water for 60 seconds, pull them out and transfer them to a bowl of ice water. Let them rest, and the skins will peel right off.