When I think back to where I first saw this recipe I draw a blank. It was literally years ago, maybe even before the food channel. Now there are many variations in the ingredients and in the cooking method, but this is the way we have always prepared it.
The actual cooking of this dish is always done by my husband. He sears the scallops for a few minutes on each side and then puts a ½ teaspoon of pesto on top to finish them off. This is a great dish, simple enough for a week night meal and elegant enough to entertain. The pesto can be store bought or handmade. In the summer I make all my pesto from scratch because of my garden. During the winter I usually buy mine ready-made, unless it’s my carrot top pesto. (Recipe for another day). The prosciutto can be substituted with thinly sliced bacon, and shrimp or even chicken could be substituted for the scallops.
This would be great as an appetizer but we serve them as a topper for pasta, risotto or a mixed green salad. I served today’s dish with a kale and Israeli couscous.
8 large, fresh scallops
Freshly ground black pepper, salt to taste
4 slices thin Prosciutto, cut in half lengthwise
4 teaspoons pesto, divided
Pat scallops dry and sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper. Wrap 1 strip of prosciutto around each scallop. Thread the scallops onto toothpicks (or skewers), securing the prosciutto to the scallop, set aside.
On medium-high heat add olive oil, when oil is hot; add prosciutto wraps scallops. Sauté the scallop on the prosciutto sides until lightly cooked and then, place the scallops right side up in the same pan and cooks 2 to 3 minutes, turn the scallops over and cook 2 to 3 minutes on the other side. Turn back over and place a dollop of the pesto on top. Wait just about a minute to let the pesto start to melt.