Sunday, January 04, 2009

Casserole Crazy: Baked Scallops and Shells

I love scallops.  And I'm kinda partial to cheesy casserole.  So what better than a cheesy casserole filled with...scallops?  I know, right?  Fast, easy, filling, warming.  Oh for goodness sakes, just go make this already.

Baked Scallops and Shells
Adapted from Casserole Crazy by Emily Farris

½ pound medium shell pasta
1 large white onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 pound large fresh bay scallops
Salt and pepper to taste
½ teaspoon Spike seasoning
1 cup grated Gruyère cheese
¾ cup half-and-half or whole milk
2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley
¼ cup bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 375°F.

In a large pot of salted water, cook the pasta until just under al dente.  Drain and set aside.

In a large pan over medium heat, saute the onions and garlic in 2 tablespoons of the butter until the onions are translucent.  Add the scallops and 2 more tablespoons of the butter.  Season with salt and pepper, and Spike seasoning.  Stir constantly until the scallops are lightly browned.

In a large bowl, mix the shells, Gruyère, half-and-half, and parsley.  When the pasta is coated, salt and pepper to taste, and add the scallops, onion, and garlic.  Mix well and transfer to a 2½-quart greased or buttered casserole dish.

Bake, uncovered, 25 to 30 minutes, or until bubbly.

In a small bowl, mix the bread crumbs with 1 tablespoons of softened butter.  When the casserole is bubbly, remove from oven and top with the bread crumb and butter mixture.  Bake approximately 10 more minutes or until the bread crumbs are golden brown.

Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Makes 4 to 5 servings

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