Fair Trade Scallop Vol au Vent
French for "windblown," vol-au-vent are light puff pastry pockets that serve as vessels for a wide range of fillings, most often a meat and vegetable combination. This rendition cups Fair Trade Certified™ scallops and green peas smothered in a decadent cream sauce. We've provided instructions for making the pastry pockets from scratch, but if you're pressed for time, or baking just isn't your thing, feel free to use pre-made dough. Your loved ones will be none the wiser - promise!
For the pastry shells
- 1 lb puffed pastry dough, thawed
- 1 large egg, separated
- 1 Tbsp heavy whipping cream
- Extra flour for rolling
For the scallops
- 1 to 1 ¼ lbs frozen Fair Trade Certified™ sea scallops (approximately 16), thawed, rinsed, and placed on a paper towel to dry
- 2 tsp unsalted butter
- 2 tsp olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the cream sauce
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
- 3 Tbsp flour
- 2 cups chicken stock
- ½ cup heavy whipping cream
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
Make the pastry shells
- Lightly flour a clean work surface. Using a rolling pin, gently roll out dough until it is about 1/4 inch thick. Using a 3 1/2-inch square cookie cutter, cut out 8 pieces; cut out centers from half the squares with a 2 1/2-inch square cookie cutter to form rings.
- In a small bowl, whisk together egg yolk and cream. Using a pastry brush, moisten top of each vol-au-vent with egg wash, being careful not to let any drip down over the cut edges. (Or moisten each ring and round with egg wash; lay one ring on top of each round, lining up outside edges.) Place vol-au-vents on an ungreased baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap; place in refrigerator 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 425°F. Bake until vol-au-vents are puffed and golden on the outside, about 12 minutes. Reduce heat to 350°F; continue baking 10 to 12 minutes to let insides cook through. Transfer vol-au-vents to a wire rack. While warm, remove and discard inside dough, and let shells cool completely.
Cook the scallops
- If present, remove the muscle from the side of the scallops. Season the scallops with salt and pepper.
- Add the butter and oil to a medium nonstick skillet over high heat. Add the scallops when the pan is hot. Sear the scallops for 1 1/2 minutes on each side. The scallops should have a golden crust on each side while still being translucent inside.
Make the cream sauce
- In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the flour. Whisk until smooth and continue cooking for 2 minutes, gradually adding the stock and cream while whisking. Bring to a boil and let simmer for 5 minutes or until thickened. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add the peas to warm through just before serving.
Assemble the vol-au-vent
- Place one vol-au-vent on each plate. Place four scallops in each and spoon over the cream and pea mixture.
- Garnish with chopped Italian parsley if desired and serve!