This time last year, Camille and I were enjoying a bounty of freshly harvested wild foods, including Japanese Knot weed, nettle, fiddlehead ferns, and ramps. Whenever possible, these delicious wild foods make up as much of our diet is possible, for their nutritional profile is superior to that of their domestic counterparts. Paired with Maine caught wild seafoods, this is a meal I could eat nearly every day. The buttery taste of the scallops cooked to perfection tossed in a rich, "briny" broth creates a flavorful meal that will have any seafood lover swooning.
Do you have any plans to go out an harvest wild foods in your area? Have any favorites local to you? I love to hear what you're eating that doesn't come from the supermarket.
- 1 pound medium sized Scallops
- 5 pounds Wild Mussels
- 1 handful Ramps, or a large Leek, roughly chopped
- 2 Garlic Cloves, minced
- 1 bunch Asparagus, bottoms removed, cut into 1 inch pieces
- Butter, Lard, or Ghee for cooking
- 8 ounces dry White Wine
- 16 ounces Chicken Stock or Spring Water
- Sea Salt, to taste
- Freshly Cracked Black Pepper
To Make the Mussel Broth:
- First, rinse the mussels really well, pulling off any attached beards. drain well.
- Heat a large Dutch Oven over medium high heat. Melt a few tablespoons of butter then add the ramps/leeks. Cook, stirring often for about 3-4 minutes until the leeks soften. Add the garlic and cook for an additional 2 minutes.
- Add the asparagus, mussels and white wine, allowing the wine to reduce by half.
- Pour in the chicken stock, cover and let steam for about 5 minutes, or until all the mussels have opened.
To Cook the Scallops:
- Season the scallops liberally with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Heat a heavy bottom pan over high heat.
- Add a few tablespoons of ghee or lard. Once melted, add the scallops.
- Cook on one side until nicely browned. Depending on the size of the scallops, this can take 2-3 minutes.
- Flip the scallops, turn off the heat and to cook for just an additional minute or 2. Remove from the pan and set aside.
Pour a large bowl full of the mussels and broth, top with scallops and an additional scoop of butter. A large chunks of toasted sourdough bread would be perfect for soaking up all the flavorful juices. Enjoy!