Scallop Grenobloise


Grenobloise means in the style of the southeastern French city of Grenoble, and refers to a classic French sauce of lemon and capers. Here, beautifully seared scallops with a golden crust are served in a sauce popping with acidity from lemon, brininess from capers, and slight warmth from mildly piquant jalapeños. Toss them with a favorite pasta for a quick, simple meal. For the best results, seek out Massachusetts dayboat scallops. They are harvested daily and are dry-packed, which yields the best flavor and sear.

Scallop Grenobloise
Photo: Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Audrey Davis
Total Time:
20 mins


  • 1 large lemon

  • 16 jumbo sea scallops

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

  • ½ teaspoon black pepper, divided

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 

  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, cut into cubes

  • 2 tablespoons capers, drained

  • 1 medium jalapeño chile, stemmed, seeded, and minced (about 1 1/2 tablespoons)

  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley


  1. Using a paring knife, remove outer peel and bitter white pith from lemon; discard. Cut in between membranes to remove lemon segments, and discard membranes. Cut segments into 1/4-inch pieces; remove and discard seeds. Set lemon segments aside.

  2. Sprinkle scallops evenly with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high. Add scallops; cook until well seared and golden brown on bottoms, about 3 minutes. Flip scallops; cook until just opaque throughout, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer scallops to a platter, and cover with aluminum foil to keep warm. Wipe skillet clean.

  3. Add butter to skillet, and melt over medium-high. Add capers and jalapeño; cook, stirring often, until sizzling and fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in lemon segments, parsley, remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Spoon mixture over scallops. Serve immediately.

Suggested Pairing

Bright, grapefruity Sauvignon Blanc: Dry Creek Vineyard

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