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Karista's Kitchen Kid Friendly Pasta vegetarian

Artichoke, Lemon and Hazelnut Tagliatelle

artichoke, lemon and hazelnut pasta

I bet you thought I’d gone missing.  There have been moments, this past summer of chaos, I often entertained the thought of going missing.  Or hiding under a rock somewhere. Maybe hiding at my sister’s house, poolside, sipping a pretty pink cocktail while enjoying solace and sunshine.

Alas, no poolside sipping pretty cocktails for me this summer.  It was full on, serious, wrap-up-business, prep a house to sell, pack up that house and move down the road to Oregon.  Phew!

I’m happy to say, all has been accomplished.  Lists completed (well, the old lists anyway) and life in a new town is proving most interesting.  And delicious.

My morning run with Tank.  I found my solace and sunshine.

My morning run with Tank. I found my solace and sunshine.

I’m soaking up the abundance of fresh produce, grass-fed and naturally raised meat and poultry here in the Willamette Valley.   I walk through the farmer’s market and our local co-op salivating at the brightly colored and freshly picked harvest; while my brain is racing with ideas of new and delicious recipes.

One of the first dishes I tossed together not long after we arrived, is this lovely Artichoke, Lemon and Hazelnut Tagliatelle.  Now residing in the hazelnut capital of the U.S., I thought it appropriate to include Oregon hazelnuts, lightly toasted, making a beautiful and tasty addition to this dish.  I also paired this pasta with pan seared scallops but it would be equally as divine with grilled shrimp or roasted chicken.

I’ve got more stories to tell, exciting news to reveal and a newly re-designed web site to share… along with new and delicious recipes perfect for the emerging Autumn season.

From Oregon with Love!

Delicious Wishes,


Lemon, Artichoke and Hazelnut Tagliatelle with Pan Seared Scallops

Serves 4-6

This makes a lovely side dish sans the scallops or even a light summer meal served with a crisp summer greens salad.  Serve with grilled chicken breast or shrimp for variation or even grilled fresh artichoke hearts and pair with your favorite Pinot Gris, Pinot Grigio or dry Chardonnay.


1 jar artichoke hearts, drained but not rinsed (7.5fl ounce jar) (I like the grilled artichoke hearts from Napoleon Brand or Cucina and Amore Brand)  If you can’t find the grilled chokes, regular is fine.

1 lemon, zested and juiced

¼ – 1/3 cup whole skinned hazelnuts

¼ cup grated parmesan, plus extra for garnish

1 clove garlic

Splash of good quality red wine vinegar (about a teaspoon or two) I used a garlic and basil infused red wine vinegar and it was delish. Use your good stuff in this dish.

½ cup extra virgin olive oil (I used Everyday Fresh from California Olive Ranch)

½ cup fresh basil, chiffonade or torn

Salt and pepper

1 lb Tagliatelle, cooked according to directions (or any other heartier pasta) (I used Jovial Brown Rice and Egg Tagliatelle and it was divine!)

1 lb pan seared or grilled scallops or larger Gulf Shrimp (even grilled chicken would be yum)


In a food processor, blender or vitamix, blend together the artichoke hearts, lemon juice only, hazelnuts, parmesan cheese, garlic clove and red wine vinegar.  Once the ingredients are combined add the olive oil and puree until almost smooth.

Stir in the lemon zest and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Toss the pesto with the cooked Tagliatelle and fresh basil and garnish with extra parmesan.  Serve on a platter and top with pan seared or grilled sea scallops, shrimp or chicken.

* If you adore artichokes,  add an extra jar of drained, grilled artichokes in the pasta.  When artichokes are in season I steam them and use fresh artichoke hearts in this dish.

Appetizers Grilling Karista's Kitchen Sauces, Salsas and More Seafood

Proscuitto Wrapped Scallops with a Raspberry Chipotle Glaze

I’m basking in the quiet this morning.  A rare moment.  The day will get busier and by the end, I’ll wonder where time went.

With a full daily schedule, I constantly remind myself “be present in the moment”.  Sage advice from my lovely yoga Instructor.  Advice that has allowed me to relish time, instead of passing through it at mach speed.

I walk around mumbling these words.  So often that I found myself reciting this phrase in the market yesterday.  To my embarrassment, a fellow shopper thought I was talking to her.  No, just talking to myself.

I realized how much I miss in life when I’m not present in the moment.  Little things my daughters say, a hidden smile from my husband, sadness in a friend’s voice or joy in my niece’s email telling me she got into the college of her choice.

Even the pained look on Tank’s face when I’ve forgotten to feed him.  Although he usually won’t let anyone forget to feed him.  Even though he’s sporting a little extra “husky” these days and could use a tiny reduction in his food consumption.

Being present in the moment has become more important to me as of late. The tragedy in Newtown is devastating.  I cannot imagine.

Like many, I’ve shed a thousand tears. My heart continues to grieve for those who lost their precious children and loved ones.  My heartfelt thoughts and prayers are with them.

I wish you all true joy, much love and peace this holiday season!

Loads of Love,


Proscuitto Wrapped Scallops with a Raspberry Chipotle Glaze

I love this dish as an entree with Mexican Diver Scallops or as an appetizer with smaller scallops U 20-30.   The Raspberry Chipotle Glaze is even fabulous on grilled salmon, chicken and shrimp.  A lovely and versatile sauce. 🙂


Serves 2-3

10 large dry packed scallops (for appetizer use smaller dry packed scallops U 20-30, but not Bay Scallops)

5-8 slices prosciutto (sliced in half lengthwise)

10 rosemary stalks for skewers (or pretty party picks that can withstand heat)

Salt and Pepper

2-4 tablespoons clarified butter or high heat oil

1 cup raspberry preserves (with or without seeds, although I prefer without seeds.  If you can’t find without seed, just strain the glaze before using)

1/4 – 1/3 cup white wine or port

1 chipotle chili in adobo sauce

Pinch of black pepper


To make the sauce,  in a blender or food processor, pulse the preserves, chipotle chili and wine.  Just until nicely combined.  Transfer to a small pot and heat on low.  Stir in a pinch of black pepper.  The heat thin the sauce a bit.  The sauce thickens as it cools.

To make the scallops, wrap one strip of prosciutto around the scallop and secure with a rosemary skewer.  Continue to do this with the remaining scallops.

Heat a large heavy bottom skillet over medium high heat and add a tablespoon or two of clarified butter or high heat oil.  Season the scallops lightly with salt and pepper.  When the butter is hot, brown the scallops on both sides.  About 1-2 minutes on each side depending on size of the scallop.  You may need to adjust your heat and turn it down to medium if your pan gets too hot.  You want the scallops to have a nice golden brown crust on each side.  Click on this link for a visual tutorial on how to perfectly pan sear scallops.

Drizzle sauce on plates or a platter and then place the cooked scallops on top of the sauce and serve immediately.  As well, you can plate the scallops and then drizzle the sauce on top.  Either way, it’ll taste fantastic!

Recipe inspired by my favorite fishmonger, Jim at Gemini Fish Market 🙂

Appetizers Karista's Kitchen Seafood

Pancetta and Radicchio Wrapped Grilled Scallops

Grilled Scallops

Grilled Scallops Wrapped in Radicchio and Pancetta

I become completely giddy when I find these large, glossy dry packed scallops at the fish market. Seriously, I embarrass my children (or myself) as I loudly proclaim how excited I am to have found these gorgeous shell fish.   It’s like my birthday or Christmas when I find them; and whatever I had planned for dinner takes a back seat and this decadent recipe is prepared.

grilled scallops

Grilled to perfection!

This is the simplest grilling recipe and is on my dinner menu almost every week during the warm summer months.  A traditional Italian recipe from a beloved old Italian book, these Radicchio and Pancetta wrapped scallops are a delicious way to enjoy a warm evening outdoors.

grilled scallops

Wrapping the Scallops

Paired with a quick Ricotta and Anchovy Crostini and my favorite DaVinci Pinot Grigio, this is a meal to savor and a delicious excuse to linger at the table.

grilled scallops

Wrapped and Ready to Grill

Delicious Wishes and Loads of Love,


Pancetta and Radicchio Wrapped Grilled Scallops

Serving Size: Serves 2-3

Pancetta and Radicchio Wrapped Grilled Scallops


  • 10-12 large sea scallops
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 10-12 radicchio leaves, rinsed and dried
  • 10-12 slices pancetta
  • 1 lemon


  • Place the scallops in a bowl and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper until well coated. Wrap a scallop in a radicchio leaf and then wrap with a slice of pancetta, securing the pancetta and radicchio to the scallop with a toothpick. Repeat until all the scallops have been wrapped in the radicchio and pancetta. If a scallop is too large for the radicchio, just cut the scallop in half.
  • Pre-heat the grill to 400F. Grill the scallops over medium heat for about 5-6 minutes until the pancetta is crispy. Squeeze a little lemon juice over each scallop and serve immediately.
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    Sauces, Salsas and More Seafood Shrimp

    Asian Style Rhubarb and Ginger Sauce with Mandarin Oranges… Perfect for Scallops, Shrimp or Pork

    Asian Rhubarb and Ginger Sauce with Mandarin Oranges

    Vivaldi is playing softly in the background and songbirds are humming a tune outside my window.

    A tranquil moment in time.

    A moment I relish with deep pleasure.

    Another picture of the Scallops... I couldn't decide which to post!

    And then the front door slams.

    Tank, the mean and ferocious terrier, barks and howls as two voices chatter loudly all the way into the kitchen.

    Which is right next to my office.  Which happens to be the dining room we never use.

    It has the best view of the mountains.  So I joyfully turned it into my office, hoping the beautiful view and songbirds would inspire.

    And they do.  Most of the time.

    Until the Bennett Crew arrives home and Vivaldi is replaced by Jason Mraz, and songbirds are replaced by the ever escalating giggling conversations of the two sassy Bennett gals.  Ahhh… the tranquility.

    I wouldn’t trade it for a thing.

    Asian Style Rhubarb and Ginger Sauce

    Serve this sauce with pan seared scallops, grilled shrimp, roasted pork loin or pan seared or grilled pork chops.  I also love it served with mandarin oranges and lots of sliced scallions (green onions).

    Serves 3-4


    2 – 3 stalks fresh rhubarb (try to find the thinner stalks, about 1- 1 1/2 inches in width)

    1/4 cup brown sugar

    2 tablespoons Tamari (I used low sodium)

    1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar

    1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger (or more to taste)

    1 clove garlic, minced

    1/2 teaspoon roasted red chili paste (I like Thai Kitchen), or a dash of Sriracha or a pinch of cayenne

    1/2 – 1 cup mandarin oranges

    1/4 cup or good handful sliced scallions (green onions)


    Trim the ends of the rhubarb and then thinly slice the rhubarb stalks and place into a small pot.  Add the brown sugar, Tamari, vinegar, grated ginger, garlic and red chili paste and stir over medium high heat.

    Bring the mixture to a lively simmer and stir.  Turn the heat down and let the sauce simmer until the rhubarb has softened and broken down, about 8-10 minutes.

    Give it a good stir and let it cool for a few minutes.  Place the sauce in a blender or food processor and puree.  Adding a tablespoon or two of water if needed to thin the sauce.  Taste for seasoning, adding salt, pepper, chili, ginger or cayenne as needed.  This is definitely one of those sauces prepared to taste.

    Serve the sauce with mandarin oranges and sliced scallions (green onions).  Serve with pan seared or grilled scallops, shrimp, or pork.  Great as a grill sauce!


    Pan Seared Scallops over Fresh Fennel and Mandarin Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

    When I titled this recipe, I could swear I heard my sister say “this sounds way too complicated!”  Ok, well, it is a long title but truly, it’s fresh, simple and delicious. (My mantra these days!)

    Ranger Craig and I love scallops, especially pan seared scallops.  I could eat them right out of the skillet. (Actually, I do that)

    Scallops have a natural sugar content that, when pan seared, forms a yummy golden brown crust around a velvety smooth center.  To make it easier to test for doneness I like to slice my scallops in half horizontally.  You won’t find this practiced in a professional kitchen, but hey, when I’m cooking at home, I like to make dinner a little simpler.

    Although I prepared pan seared scallops for this recipe, I also love to serve this salad with halibut cheeks, halibut filets, true cod and Dover sole, as well as grilled fresh salmon when it’s in season.  The flavors of fennel and orange are highly complimentary and combining these two fresh flavors with fish, is 4th of July for the taste buds!

    Add a little “something extra” to the Fennel and Orange salad with toasted walnuts and my favorite Valbreso French sheep’s milk feta.  You can find this creamy sheep’s milk cheese at most grocery stores, but here in the Northwest, you’ll find it at PCC Natural Markets, QFC and Whole Foods.

    Delightful, delicious and looks like sunshine on a plate. 🙂


    Serves 2-3

    10-12 large dry packed fresh scallops (ask your fishmonger for “dry packed” scallops.  If packed in water or liquid solution, they will be soggy and resist forming that beautiful crust when pan seared)

    2 tablespoons unsalted butter

    2 tablespoons coconut, safflower, sunflower or peanut oil

    1 large fennel bulb, quartered and thinly sliced (save a few fronds to use as garnish)

    1 – 1 1/2 cups mandarin oranges, about 4 mandarins peeled and separated

    2 cups arugula, baby spinach or spring greens (I like a mixture of all three)

    1/3 cup good quality olive oil

    3 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice

    3 tablespoons honey

    Salt and pepper to taste


    Remove the “foot” or little muscle from each scallop.  It’s a little piece of the scallop that is a bit more opaque than the rest of the scallop.  Simply pull it off and discard.  Slice each scallop in half horizontally.  Season with salt and pepper.

    In a heavy bottom skillet, heat the butter and oil on medium high heat.  When the butter and oil are hot and frothy, almost smoking, add the scallops.  You may need to do this in two batches.  Don’t over crowd the pan or the scallops will steam rather than pan sear.

    Let the scallops cook for a minute or two.  When a golden brown crust forms on the bottom of the scallop turn it over to cook the other side and cook for another minute or two.  Once the scallops look nicely toasted in color, transfer to a platter and keep warm.

    Whisk together the oil, lemon juice and honey.  Toss the fennel, greens and oranges in a large bowl and sprinkle with a little salt and pepper.

    Drizzle all but a few tablespoons of the vinaigrette over the greens and toss.  Taste salad for salt and pepper.

    Plate the salad on a platter or individual plates and top with pan seared scallops.  Drizzle the remaining vinaigrette over the scallops and enjoy!

    Options:  To serve this salad without the scallops, top with sheep’s milk feta cheese and toasted walnuts or pecans.  Or try serving with toasted pine nuts and your favorite Bleu cheese.

    Pasta Sauces, Salsas and More Seafood

    Pan Seared Scallops in a New Orleans Style Bordelaise Sauce Over Capellini

    Scallops Bordelaise, New Orleans Style

    Just when you thought I couldn’t find another way to prepare scallops, here’s one more!  I guess we can blame my scallop obsession on Fishmonger Jim at Gemini Fish Market.  He always brings in the most gorgeous dry packed sea scallops.  And of course, I cannot resist!

    A New Orleans style Bordelaise sauce is much lighter and prepared with shallots, garlic, scallions, fresh herbs, white wine, a pinch of red pepper, heavy cream and lets not forget… a pat (or two) of butter.   The combination of fresh and zesty flavors beautifully compliments the pan seared scallops and delicate capellini; making a lovely  and delicious dinner.

    Although I adore sea scallops I realize not everyone feels the same way.  So feel free to substitute the scallops with large prawns, bay scallops, or try adding clams to the sauce and then toss with the pasta.  Simple, fresh and absolutely delicious!

    Delicious Wishes!

    Scallops Bordelaise, New Orleans Style

    Recipe adapted from Lousiana Cooking

    Serves 2-3


    1 lb Sea Scallops (ask for “dry packed”), halved horizontally for faster cooking

    2-3 tablespoons grapeseed oil, or ghee (clarified butter), or a combination of oil and unsalted butter

    3-4 tablespoons unsalted butter

    1 large shallot, finely chopped (about 1/4 cup)

    2-3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

    1/4 cup chopped scallions

    2 tablespoons fresh Italian parsley, chopped

    2 sprigs thyme leaves, chopped

    1 sprig fresh oregano leaves, chopped (optional)

    1/2 cup dry white wine

    1/4 cup heavy cream

    Pinch of red pepper flakes

    Sea salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste

    1/2 – 1 lb capellini pasta (or linguine), cooked

    Fresh lemon wedges


    In a medium skillet or saute pan heat 2 tablespoons of oil or clarified butter over medium heat.  When the oil or butter is hot (almost smoking), sear the scallops until golden brown on each side and they are firm to the touch.  Don’t move them around in your pan or they won’t develop that lovely crust. It will take at least 2 minutes or so and then you can take a peek.  Click on the highlighted “scallops” and it will take you to a tutorial on how to pan sear scallops.

    You may need to sear the scallops in batches, adding additional olive oil and butter as needed.  Transfer to a plate and keep them warm.

    In the same skillet over medium heat add a another tablespoon of butter, the shallots, garlic, scallions, 1/2 the parsley, thyme and oregano and let them cook for a minute or two.  Then add the white wine and let it simmer a minute or two.

    Reduce the heat to medium low and whisk in the heavy cream and two tablespoons of butter.  Let the sauce simmer for a minute or two.  Add the pinch of red pepper and season with salt and pepper to taste.

    Toss the pasta with the sauce and transfer to a serving dish.  Place the seared sea scallops on top of the pasta and garnish with the remaining Italian parsley.  Serve immediately with fresh lemon wedges.

    Sauces, Salsas and More Seafood

    Pan Seared Sea Scallops with Fresh Spring Greens, Mandarin Oranges and a Citrus Vinaigrette

    Sea scallops seem to be one of the “scariest” shellfish to prepare.  I cannot tell you how many times I’ve ruined perfectly good scallops.  The key is to be patient.  Scallops really are simple to prepare and can make a fast, delicious dinner if you follow a few important steps. 

    Make sure you have a good quality heavy bottom skillet that distributes heat evenly.   A cast iron skillet is perfect, but if you don’t have one, just a good heavy bottom skillet will do.  Coat the bottom of the skillet with a bit of butter and olive oil.  Heat the skillet on medium, and when the butter/oil is hot, but not smoking, you’re good to go.  Add the scallops and let them sit and sear.  Most people get a little nervous and try moving the scallops before they are ready.  So be patient and when the scallop develops a nice brown crust on the bottom, it’s time to flip. 

    There are a multitude of sauces you can use to top scallops.  My favorite is simply a citrus vinaigrette which will compliment the scallops and the fresh greens.  If you’d like something spicier, the spicy orange vinaigrette in the pan seared dover sole blog would be delicious as well.   Happy Cooking!

    Serves 4


    1 ½ lbs fresh dry packed sea scallops

    Olive oil

    Kosher salt (Kosher sea salt is excellent on scallops, just use more sparingly)

    Fresh cracked black pepper

    4-6 cups fresh spring greens (mix of Arugula and baby Spinach is nice too)

    1 cup mandarin orange segments

    1 lemon zested and juiced

    1 lime zested and juiced

    1 tablespoon white wine vinegar

    2 tablespoons honey

    1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

    ¾ cup olive oil

    Salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste


    Vinaigrette: Vinaigrettes are typically 3 parts oil to 1 part vinegar (or acid).  Combine lime and lemon juice to make ¼ cup.  Then add the vinegar, honey, Dijon and zest.  Whisk together until blended.  As you whisk, drizzle in the ¾ cup olive oil.  Whisk until all ingredients are well blended together.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Set aside.

    Heat a large skillet on medium and add a few tablespoons of olive oil.  If the scallops are moist, dry them with a paper towel and then sprinkle with a little sea salt and pepper. 

    When the oil is very hot, but not smoking, add the scallops to the skillet, about 1 inch apart.  Let the scallops sit and sear in the pan for a minute or two.  The scallops will begin to develop a nice golden brown crust and when the scallop is ready to be turned it will easily lift up off the bottom of the pan. 

    Sear both sides of the scallops (a few minutes on each side depending on thickness) and then place on a warm plate.  Toss the vinaigrette with the fresh greens and mandarins, and mound the greens on 4 plates.  Next, place a few scallops on each mound of greens and then drizzle with additional citrus vinaigrette. 

    This is delicious all by itself, but if you’d like to add another side, herbed wild rice, brown rice, cous cous or risotto compliment scallops beautifully.  Or try a side of fresh fruit drizzled with a little lime juice, and honey, and tossed with chopped fresh mint.