Seared Scallops with Corn Cream


This recipe for seared scallops on fresh corn cream shows that you can take a few seasonal ingredients, put them together simply and quickly, and produce something pretty special. There are three keys to producing sufficiently seared scallops. First, they must be perfectly dry. Second, the oil goes on the cold scallops, not in the hot pan. Third, your pan must be extremely hot, which means you have to use a very heavy, cast iron or stainless steel pan.

Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
35 mins
4 servings


Corn Cream:

  • 2 ears fresh white corn, kernels cut from cob

  • 1 cup chicken broth

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • salt to taste

  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper


  • 12 large sea scallops, rinsed and patted dry

  • 1 red Fresno pepper, thinly sliced

  • 2 teaspoons canola oil

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika, or to taste

  • 1 splash water

  • 1 tablespoon butter, or more to taste

  • ½ lemon, juiced

  • ¼ cup radish sprouts, or to taste


  1. Stir corn kernels, chicken broth, 2 tablespoons butter, cayenne pepper, and salt together in a saucepan; bring to a simmer, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook until corn is tender, about 5 minutes.

  2. Pour corn mixture into a blender no more than half full. Cover and hold lid down; pulse a few times before leaving on to blend. Puree in batches until smooth. Pour pureed corn mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a saucepan. Season with salt to taste.

  3. Toss scallops, Fresno pepper, canola oil, kosher salt, and smoked paprika in a bowl until scallops are completely coated. Separate pepper slices from scallops.

  4. Heat a large heavy skillet over high heat until very hot, about 5 minutes. Cook scallops in hot skillet until browned on one side, about 3 minutes. Turn and cook on the other side until cooked through, about 3 minutes more. Cook and stir sliced peppers on the side of the skillet while the scallops are cooking.

  5. Remove skillet from heat; transfer scallops to a plate, leaving peppers in hot skillet. Stir water and 1 tablespoon butter into peppers until butter melts. Drizzle lemon juice over peppers; stir to glaze peppers completely.

  6. Divide corn cream between four bowls. Place 3 scallops over corn puree and top with glazed peppers. Garnish with radish sprouts.

    close up view of Seared Scallops over Corn Cream, garnished with red peppers and green onions in a white bowl

Cook's Note:

You can substitute grapeseed oil for the canola oil, if desired. You can substitute water for the chicken broth, if desired.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

276 Calories
13g Fat
18g Carbs
23g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 276
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 13g 17%
Saturated Fat 6g 30%
Cholesterol 64mg 21%
Sodium 987mg 43%
Total Carbohydrate 18g 7%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Total Sugars 3g
Protein 23g
Vitamin C 28mg 141%
Calcium 37mg 3%
Iron 1mg 5%
Potassium 635mg 14%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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