Recipe courtesy of Juliana Malfitano

Pan-Seared Scallops and Pork Belly with Pomegranate Agrodolce and Beurre Blanc

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 hr
  • Active: 50 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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12 large (size U-10) fresh scallops, muscle removed

One 2-pound piece pork belly, par-boiled

2 tablespoons olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon butter

Vegetable oil, for frying

2 pounds baby arugula

2 cups strawberries, sliced

1 cup shelled pistachios

Vanilla Bean Vinaigrette, recipe follows

Beurre Blanc, recipe follows

Pomegranate Agrodolce, recipe follows

Vanilla Bean Vinaigrette:

1/4 cup champagne vinegar

1 tablespoon honey

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1 vanilla bean, scraped

1 cup grapeseed oil

Beurre Blanc:

1/4 cup dry vermouth or white wine

1/4 cup white wine vinegar

1 shallot, minced

Salt and finely ground black or white pepper

2 sticks cold butter, cut into tablespoon-size pieces

1 tablespoon lemon juice

Pomegranate Agrodolce:

2 cups pomegranate juice

1/2 cup fine sugar

1 tablespoon sherry vinegar


  1. Dry the scallops very well with a paper towel. Cut the pork belly into uniform cubes about the size of the scallops.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet set over medium-high heat. Sprinkle the scallops with salt and pepper and then add to the skillet. Add the butter to the skillet. When the bottom is golden brown, flip the scallop and cook for 1 minute.
  3. Heat vegetable oil in a deep fryer to 350 degrees F. Alternatively, in a large heavy-bottomed saucepan, pour enough oil to fill the pan about a third of the way. Heat over medium heat until a deep-frying thermometer inserted in the oil reaches 350 degrees F.
  4. Deep-fry the pork belly until crispy, but not too hard. Drain the pork belly on a paper-towel-lined plate.
  5. In a bowl, toss the arugula, sliced strawberries and pistachios with some of the Vanilla Bean Vinaigrette. Mound the salad on the plate, then arrange the scallops and pork belly around the salad. Top with some Beurre Blanc and drizzle with the Pomegranate Agrodolce to serve.

Vanilla Bean Vinaigrette:

  1. Place the vinegar, honey, mustard and vanilla seeds in the food processor, and pulse until mixed. Slowly drizzle in the oil with machine running until emulsified.

Beurre Blanc:

  1. In a saucepan set over medium-low heat, bring the vermouth and vinegar to a low simmer. Add the shallots and season with salt and pepper. Simmer to cook until the liquid reduces by half, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in 4 tablespoons of the butter until fully incorporated. Return the pan to low heat and whisk in the remaining butter, one piece at a time. Add the lemon juice, then remove from the heat, cover and keep warm until ready to serve.

Pomegranate Agrodolce:

  1. Combine the pomegranate juice, sugar and vinegar in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat to low and simmer until thick and syrupy, 10 to 15 minutes.