Talk Of The Town


Scrumptious Seared Scallops

Posted at 12:05 PM, Oct 23, 2020

Director of Culinary Experience at Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa, creates seared diver scallops, one of the featured items available during the upcoming Winemaker’s Dinner (Saturday, Oct. 24) at the resort. Hosted in partnership with the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina, the Winemaker’s Dinner is an exquisite culinary experience which pairs DreamMore Resort’s delectable dishes with wines from Biltmore. It certainly should be an evening to remember as these world-renowned attractions team for the first time. For more information go to

Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa Seared Diver Scallops

4-6 Servings

Celery Root & Parsnip Puree:


  • 1 celery root, peeled
  • 4 parsnips, cleaned and peeled
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 8 oz. unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp. sea salt
  • 1 tbsp. cracked black pepper


Cut celery root into large pieces. Cover celery root pieces with water in an appropriate size pot and let simmer over medium heat until tender--about 15 minutes. Cut the parsnips into manageable but large diced pieces, then cover with water and let simmer over medium heat for 15 minutes. Once both the celery and parsnips are done, drain them and puree in food processor together. Add heavy cream and 8oz of soft butter. Season to taste salt and pepper. Keep warm until time to plate.

Watercress Pesto:


  • 1 cup fresh watercress
  • ¼ cup toasted walnuts
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. parmigiana-reggiano cheese, grated
  • salt and pepper


Wash Watercress and pat dry with paper towel. Combine watercress, garlic and toasted walnuts in food processor. Turn on the food processor and slowly incorporate 1 cup extra virgin olive oil. Add grated parmesan. Season with salt and pepper.

Chili Oil:


  • ½ cup grapeseed oil
  • 1 tsp merken chili
  • 1 tsp sweet paprika


In a small pan, slowly heat grapeseed oil over warm. Pull off of heat and add merken chili and paprika. Let steep for 10 minutes. Strain with cheese cloth or coffee filter. Place oil in squeeze bottle.


  • 6 fresh U10 scallops
  • 2 tbsps. olive oil
  • 2 tbsps. unsalted butter
  • sea salt and cracked black pepper


Season scallops with sea salt and cracked black pepper and set to the side. In a skillet pan over medium heat, add 2 tbsps. olive oil. Once olive oil is hot, add scallops and sear on one side for 2 to 3 minutes. Repeat on the other side. Add 2 tbsps. butter to pan. Tilt pan and baste the scallops with the melted butter by spooning it over the scallops as it cooks. Set them to the side to keep warm.


Additional ingredients:

  • 2 lemons, thinly sliced
  • 1 heirloom apple (Roxbury russet or lady apple)
  • fresh micro greens or fresh herbs coarsely chopped

Take one dollop of celery root & parsnip puree and place on plate. With a back of a spoon, swipe once across plate. Place seared scallop on top. The Pesto can either be drizzled over the top of the scallop or you may use a culinary basting brush by dipping the brush in pesto and making a brush mark along the side of the puree. Drizzle with Chili Oil. Garnish with lemon slices, diced apple and micro greens or fresh herbs.

If you would like to use preserved lemon slices instead of fresh, the lemons will need to be prepared one week in advance.


  • 1 lemon thinly sliced
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup Kosher Salt


Rub kosher salt on both sides of each lemon slice before placing them in a small canning jar with lid. Let sit covered in the refrigerator for 7 days. When plating with scallops, remove 2 slices and brush off excess salt before placing on plate.