Of course you could eat this without the scallops and keep it vegetarian (and easier on your wallet). But we are loving scallops lately so I splurged. Other than making the broth ahead of time which takes an extra hour, this meal comes together really quickly. It feels decadent and yet its elegant simplicity at its best.
I usually don't serve bread with pasta, but you'll want to sop up all of the delicious broth, so don't leave it off the plate.
Capellini in Herb Parmesan Broth with Seared Scallops
1/2 lb capellini pasta
1/2 lb bay scallops
1 tablespoon parsley, minced
2 rinds cut from parmesan cheese (frozen rinds from cheese past are great!)
couple sprigs of fresh thyme
couple sprigs of fresh parsley
2 bay leaves
1/2 onion, peeled and quartered
2 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
12 black peppercorns
Make the stock by combining onion, garlic, fresh herbs, bay leaves, peppercorns, parmesan rinds and 3 cups of water and bring to boil. Lower heat to simmer and cook for 45 minutes until broth is fragrant. Strain out solids and return broth to a pot.
Heat large skillet over high heat for 5 minutes. Add oil to coat the bottom and add scallops and toss to coat in oil and allow to sear on each side, cooking for about 6-8 minutes. Meanwhile bring broth back to a boil and cook capellini in it until al dente. Season with salt and pepper and serve by scooping out pasta portions, ladling scallops on top and adding one ladle of broth to each serving. Garnish with parsley, lemon and your favorite grated hard cheese.