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Seared Sea Scallops and Cauliflower Purée a Recipe

Completing a DIY home renovation in Provence is not necessarily for every couple. Ashley and Robin made their house transformation look easy. Now, with some time on their hands, they can enjoy their kitchen and entertain friends. This recipe for seared sea scallops on a cauliflower purée could be served in a gourmet restaurant. Ashley admits she can only take credit for the photo (after all she is the photographer in the family), but the preparation was by chef Robin. Follow this link to the original post.

Recipes with Scallops

Butternut Squash Soup with Roast Scallops from Jane’s kitchen at Mas d’Augustine

Seared Scallops (St. Jacques) with Creamy Curried Leeks from David  at Cocoa&Lavender

Roasted Scallops on Polenta Mash by Mirabeau Wine

Seared Sea Scallops Cauliflower Purée

Seared Sea Scallops and Cauliflower Purée

Scallops are easy to cook, once you know how. This recipe with a cauliflower purée is light and flavourful. This is a recipe from Robin's repertoire. I take no credit! This recipe is simple, looks stunning and it's delicious. A great way to impress dinner guests.
Course Main Dish
Cuisine French
Servings 4 people


  • 1 head Cauliflower broken into small pieces
  • 1 liter milk semi-skimmed or whole
  • 12 Scallops the best quality and as dry as possible
  • 4 strips of Bacon or lardons
  • 3 sprigs parsley chopped finely for serving
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Butter for frying


  • Heat the oven to 375°F and place the bacon on a tray lined with baking parchment.
  • Bake for about 15 minutes until very crispy. If your bacon is quite fatty, you may need to drain the fat halfway through. Reserve on kitchen paper towel.
  • Place the cauliflower into a saucepan with enough milk to just cover it.
  • Bring the milk to a boil and simmer on a low heat for about 10 minutes or until the cauliflower is soft. Leave to cool.
  • Purée the mixture until smooth. Sieve for extra smoothness.
  • Place back into the saucepan to reheat.
  • Season liberally with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Pat the scallops dry with kitchen paper. This is the key to allow them to become crispy.
  • Place a frying pan on medium-high heat and add a generous tablespoon of butter.
  • Allow the butter to melt and the pan to get hot.
  • Fry the scallops for 1-2 minutes on each side depending on the size. The scallops above are quite large so they were 2 minutes each side. You may need to do this in batches depending on the size of your frying pan.
  • Season the scallops with salt and pepper while in the pan.
  • Squeeze the bacon in the paper towel into create little bits.
  • Chop the parsley.
  • Dish out the reheated cauliflower purée to just cover the bottom of your plate. Next, place the scallops on the plate with the garnish. It helps if you have an extra pair of hands to assist with this step.
  • Drizzle with good quality olive oil and serve with crisp white wine.


This recipe serves 4, with 3 scallops per person.
The scallops should be served HOT so make sure you have your garnishes (bacon and parsley) ready.
The scallops should be cooked but remain a bit translucent in the middle after frying, the way a restaurant would serve them. Overcooked scallops are rubbery.
For some extra spice, use pan-fried crispy chorizo instead of bacon.
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Ashley Tinker

Ashley was born and raised in Montréal, Canada. She has always been drawn to the history, way of life and beauty of Europe. Her feelings for Europe were reconfirmed while studying art in Florence, Italy. Ashley says that stone buildings, colourful shutters and terra cotta tile rooftops fill her dreams and now her days.

Ashley moved to Provence in 2014 with her partner Robin (he also shares her Francophile passions). They are in search of the French joie de vivre, which they find at every turn in the local markets and natural beauty of Provence. This couple are indulging in local olives and wine as the Provencal sunshine changes craggy rocks into things of beauty.

You can see all of Ashley's blog posts on Curious Provence.

Take a look at Ashley's beautiful fine art photography on her Photographer in Provence website.


  1. May 13, 2018 at 9:50 am — Reply

    Thanks, Ashley! I look forward to trying this soon. Scallops and cauliflower are two of our favorites!

    • May 13, 2018 at 1:32 pm — Reply

      Thanks, David. Just like yours, Ashely’s photos make me want to make the recipes!

    • May 13, 2018 at 10:16 pm — Reply

      Bon Appetit!

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