When I saw a saffron cream sauce over at The Pink Peppercorn, I immediately put it on my list of things to make. Then I saw another one over at Vlasta Loves to Cook, and it went on my list of things to cook immediately!

Saffron can be expensive, but I picked some up on a trip to Trader Joe’s for $2.99. As long as you have that on hand, this dish can easily be whipped up with ingredients that you’ll likely have on hand. A little milk, leftover heavy cream from making ice cream, some frozen bay scallops … a little bit of this, a little bit of that… and you have an amazing dish!

This is comfort food at its finest, it was a cold, rainy day at the end of a long week and I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect meal than a dish of this, a piece of garlic bread, and a glass of wine. It was rich and filling without being heavy, and really, can anythign with scallops not be amazing? Since I used frozen bay scallops instead of sea scallops,  it was also very inexpensive to make. You’d never know by the taste though. I’d serve this at a dinner party without a second thought. Actually, I might invite people for dinner just so I have an excuse to make it again. Not bad, considering it was on the table in 15 minutes flat!

Linguini with Scallops and Saffron Cream Sauce

  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 small shallot, chopped
  • 2Tbs flour
  • 1/4 c. heavy cream
  • 1-3/4 c. skim milk
  • 1 tsp saffron
  • 1/2 lb bay scallops
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 1/2 c. baby spinach, torn (I’d use more next time)
  • 1 pkg fresh linguine

Spray a medium saucepan with cooking spray and set over medium heat. Add garlic and shallot and heat until softened, about 3 minutes. Add flour, and cook about 1 minute, stirring constantly. Whisk in cream and milk. Continue to whisk untilflout is incorporated and there are no lumps. Add saffron. Allow to simmer and reduce by about 1/2, stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile, cook linguine.

Set a medium skillet over high heat. Add scallops and cook until defrosted, about 2 minutes. Add oil and cook another 3 or so minutes or until slightly browned and cooked through. Remove from heat.

Add spinach to sauce and allow to wilt. Pour sauce into pan with scallops. Drain pasta. Add pasta to scallops and sauce, and toss to coat. Let sit for a few minutes to allow sauce to thicken.

Serves 2-3.