1. Heat the olive oil with 1 tbsp butter in a sauté pan set over a medium heat until hot.
2. Add the onion and a pinch of salt, sweating until softened. Continue to cook until starting to brown, 4-5 minutes.
3. Add the sugar and vinegar, cooking for a further 3-4 minutes until reduced. Remove from the heat and set aside.
4. Bring the cream to the boil in a heavy-based saucepan. Add the saffron threads and reduce to a gentle simmer until the cream has thickened and reduced. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
5. Heat the sunflower oil in a large non-stick frying pan set over a high heat until hot. Pat scallops dry with kitchen paper and season with salt and pepper on both sides.
6. Add scallops to the pan, frying until golden underneath, 1-2 minutes. Turn and continue to pan-fry for a further minute or so; reduce the heat slightly, add butter to pan, and baste with the melted butter for final 20-30 seconds of cooking.
7. Divide between plates and serve with the onions on the side and the cream sauce spooned over. Garnish with more saffron, if desired.
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 pinch sugar
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 250 ml double cream
- 1 pinch saffron threads, plus extra to serve
- 12 queen scallops, roe removed
- 2 tbsp sunflower oil
- freshly ground black pepper
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