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Scallops with Cauliflower 'Risotto' Primavera
Nathan Congleton / TODAY
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3.3953488 (86 rated)
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I love this recipe because it is simple, but has incredibly bold flavors and truly represents the best spring ingredients.

Technique tip: Dry scallops on a paper towel before seasoning and cooking. This will help with browning and creating a much deeper flavor.


  • Lemon-thyme vinaigrette

    • 1/3 cup lemon juice
    • 1 lemon, zested
    • 1/4 cup honey
    • 5 sprigs thyme, leaves only
    • 2 teaspoons salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    • 1 tablespoon diced shallot
    • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • Risotto

    • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
    • 3 large scallops
    • Oil, for sautéing
    • 2 teaspoons chopped garlic
    • 2 teaspoons chopped shallot
    • 1/2 cup morel mushrooms, washed, sliced and stemmed
    • 1 tablespoon butter
    • 1 leek, braised in butter
    • 1/2 cup fresh English peas, blanched
    • 3 rainbow carrots, oven roast with herbs
    • 1 cup cauliflower rice, cooked in vegetable stock to al dente
    • 2 to 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese or nutritional yeast flakes


For the lemon-thyme vinaigrette:

In a bowl, whisk together the lemon juice and zest, honey, thyme leaves, salt, pepper and shallots. Slowly add in the oil, whisking constantly, until well blended.

For the risotto:

1. Season the scallops on both sides with salt and pepper.

2. Heat a pan with a drizzle of oil and sear scallops until golden on both sides. Remove from pan and set aside.

3. Add garlic and shallots, and saute, but don't let them brown. Add the morel mushrooms, butter, leeks, carrots, peas, cauliflower and Parmesan cheese; stir. Season mixture with salt and pepper to taste.

4. Spoon risotto onto plates, top with scallops and drizzle with lemon vinaigrette.