Puree: Roughly chop the onions, garlic, peppers, piquillos, and cilantro; then add all puree ingredients into a food processor, except the olive oil and salt and pepper. Pulse several times until all ingredients have been finely diced. Once finely diced, slowly drizzle olive oil into food processor, while pulsing. Taste, add salt and pepper, as needed. Remove puree from processor and add to a large skillet over medium heat. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly, then reduce heat to low.
Scallops: Pat and dry scallops with paper towels; lightly season with salt, pepper, and cayenne. Heat olive oil and butter in large skillet over very high heat. In batches, cook scallops until golden brown and opaque throughout, about 2 minutes per side.
Plate scallops on a white rectangular plate, lightly drizzle plate and scallops with piquillo pepper puree. Garnish with fresh thyme and serve.
This recipe was created by a contestant during a cooking competition. It has not been tested for home use.