While the saying goes the way to man’s heart is through his stomach, I’ve found it no less true for the fairer sex; and Valentines day is the perfect time to test the rule.  This is my Valentine’s day recipe for Heart Shaped Scallops, and while seemingly a bit cheesy, I guarantee success.  The first time I made these, they were for a girlfriend and it was early in our relationship.  And they, among other things, convinced her to stick around and eventually marry me.  You can prepare just about any sauce with these heart shaped scallops that you’d like.  I’ve kept it very simple, making a quick tomato and basil sauce.  Obviously, it being Valentines day, some red on the plate is kind of a must.  Hope you impress your lady or your guy, and hope you love these scallops as much as I do.

Recipe Overview & Keys to Success

To make the best Valentines Day Scallops, try to make sure you do the following:

  1. Round, square, triangle, or heart shaped, you’ve got to sear the scallop right.  Use a good hot pan (non stick is best), and don’t overcook them, they only need about 2-3 minutes cooking time
  2. The sauce here is very simple, and needs to be balance well, with the right amount of acid from the balsamic, and the right about of seasoning.  I actually like to go relatively light on the tomato and basil itself, but still drizzle a good amount of olive oil and the natural juices from the tomato over the scallop.


Ingredients (for 2)

  • 4 scallops
  • 1 small tomato
  • 1 tablespoon chopped basil
  • 2 – 3 tablespoons of good olive oil
  • Drizzle of balsamic vinegar

Heart Shaped Scallops

  • Start by making the sauce for the scallops
  • Dice the tomato into 1/4 inch pieces, and combine them with the basil, olive oil, and a drizzle of balsamic
  • To make the heart shaped scallops, cut a V at the 12 o’clock position, thinking of the scallop as a clock face
  • You may also want to trim a bit from both sides of the scallops at the 3 to 6 position and the 6 to 9 position
  • This will give you the heart shaped scallop
  • Season both sides with salt and pepper
  • Heat a non-stick pan over high heat, and then add olive oil to the pan
  • Gently lay the scallop in the pan, and allow it to sear on that side for about a minute and half – if you don’t hear a loud sizzle, the pan is not hot enough, and you should remove the scallop and allow it to get to get hotter
  • Flip the scallops over and sear on the other side for one minute (no longer, or you may over cook them)
  • Move the scallops to the serving plate (I like two each) and drizzle some of the sauce around the scallops

Hope you enjoy it!

Wine Recommendation: What else, other than Champaign, could you serve with some scallops on Valentine’s day.  It’s the perfect match for both the scallops and for the holiday.

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