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“This dish easily impresses without requiring much skill in the kitchen,” says the author of the True Roots cookbook.

Kristin Cavallari’s Seared Scallops with Fennel & Tomatoes

1 Tbsp. olive oil
12 large dry-packed sea scallops (about 12 oz. total)
¾ tsp. kosher salt, divided
¼ tsp. black pepper, divided
1 fennel bulb (about 8 oz.), thinly sliced
1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
1/8 tsp. garlic powder
1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
Watercress or microgreens, for garnish (optional)
Coarse or flaky sea salt

1. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over high. Pat scallops dry with a paper towel, and sprinkle both sides with ¼ teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of the pepper. Add scallops to skillet, and sear on 1 side until browned, about 2 minutes. Flip and sear on other side until browned, another 2 minutes. Transfer scallops to a plate, and set aside.

2. Reduce heat to medium high; add fennel, thyme and garlic powder to skillet, and cook, stirring often, until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining ½ teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Add tomatoes, and cook, stirring often, until charred, about 3 minutes.

3. Divide fennel mixture and scallops among 4 plates. Garnish with microgreens, if desired, and a pinch of sea salt.

Serves: 4
Active time: 20 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes

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