Sea Scallops with Slow Braised Fennel and White Bean Puree

Bean Purée

1 1/2 cups dry Great Northern beans
1 onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 rib of celery, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 carrot, cut into 1/4-inch dice
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
6 cups chicken stock, fresh or canned
kosher salt and pepper to taste
few drops extra-virgin olive oil

Soak the beans overnight. Drain and transfer to a 2-quart pot along with the diced onion, celery, carrot, minced garlic, thyme, 5 cups of stock, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer until beans are very tender, about 90 minutes. If necessary, add more broth.

Drain the beans. Reserve some beans for garnish. Puree remainder in a food processor, adding a few drops of oil if needed. Adjust seasonings.

Slow Braised Fennel

2 fennel bulbs, quartered
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 cups chicken or vegetable stock, fresh or canned
kosher salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Sauté fennel in olive oil in a heavy oven-proof skillet until lightly browned, season with salt and pepper, and then cover with stock. Cover pan and bake for 11/2 hours. Remove and keep warm.


12 large fresh scallops, preferably diver or dry-pack
kosher salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
4 sprigs fresh thyme, for garnish

Season scallops with salt and pepper. Sauté in oil in a heavy large skillet over medium-high heat until golden and just cooked through, about 3 minutes on each side.

To serve, spoon white bean puree onto plates, put 2 pieces of fennel on top, then place the scallops on top of the fennel. Sprinkle the reserved whole beans around the scallops and drizzle with pan juices. Garnish with thyme sprigs. Serves 4.