stuffed scallops; Romano beans; fennel; heirlooms


I just got carried away with the vegetables and herbs this time, including lemon verbena; because it was there.

A generous and very thoughtful farmer shared a sampling of herbs with me the other day when I was at the Greenmarket, and among them were a few sprigs of lemon verbena, something I hadn’t used in the kitchen for years. Last night I decided to substitute it for the basil I usually use when I want to grill stuffed scallops, or stuffed monkfish medallions.  The results were pretty luscious, as I had expected.

The only other thing I have to say about this delicious plate is that those little ‘scallop sandwiches’ in particular would make a great finger food at some fancy catered event, especially if skewered on little bamboo picks.


  • scallops from P.E. & D. D. Seafood, rinsed, dried, and inside a slit made in the side of each, stuffed with a finely-chopped mixture of a small amount of ramp fruit along, with lemon verbena, both from Berried Treasures, black peppercorns, and salt, a tablespoon of olive oil added to make a paste, the assembly then rolled around on a plate with a little more olive oil, pan grilled about 2 minutes on each side, removed to plates, where lemon juice and olive oil were drizzled over the top
  • a combination of golden cherry tomatoes from Berried Treasures, halved, and one red heirloom tomato from Norwich Meadows Farm, cut into wedges, all mixed with olive oil, salt, pepper, a little balsamic vinegar, and tarragon from Stokes Farm
  • baby fennel from Paffenroth Gardens, quartered, mixed with olive oil, salt, and pepper, pan grilled until soft, then tossed with green fennel fronds
  • yellow Romano beans from Berried Treasures, parboiled for a few minutes and dried, reheated in a heavy cast iron pan with some ramp fruits which had been briefly sautéed in oil, the vegetable then finished with salt, pepper, chopped copper (or bronze) fennel fronds, and lovage, both also from Berried Treasures
  • the wine was a great German pinot rosé, Becker, Petit Rose, 2013, from Flatiron Wines & Spirits
  • the music was Antonion Salieri, ‘La grotta di Trofonio