Vadouvan Curry-Dusted Scallops with Apple Broth

Need a knockout seafood recipe for a special occasion? Try these curry-dusted scallops with French herbs and spices served with a slightly sweet apple broth.

Vadouvan Curry-Dusted Scallops with Apple Broth

This is a sponsored post.

I love curries! Note the plural. Lots of folks think there is only one type of curry and it’s labeled “curry powder” in the spice aisle of your grocery store. Wrong! Curry blends originated in India and Pakistan as a way of preserving meat. In the oppressively hot weather, meat would spoil almost immediately, even if cooked. The resourceful natives of India and Pakistan learned that meat would keep longer if it had been cooked in spices such as coriander, cumin, hot peppers, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, mace, paprika, turmeric, cloves, fennel, fenugreek, anise seed, cardamom, mustard seeds, allspice, curry leaves, kaffir lime leaves, galangal, and lemongrass. Different curry traditions started to emerge around the world as families started developing their own secret blends.

Savory Spice Shop logo
When Savory Spice Shop, a company based in Denver, Colorado that sells spices online, offered to send me a bunch of their curry blends, I jumped at the opportunity to try their products as several friends in Colorado had mentioned them to me before. Savory Spice Shop sent each member of the Virtual Potluck gang products from different areas of their store; check out our host blog for this party, Cookistry, to see the fabulous dishes everyone created. Each VP blog is featuring a different spice set, so be sure to enter all of the giveaways (including mine below).

Savory Spice Shop curries

A Few Types of Curry

So which curry blends did I get?

  • Vadouvan – a smoky French curry blend containing onion, salt, shallots, cumin, turmeric, garlic, black mustard seeds, cardamom, black pepper, fenugreek, sugar and hickory smoke. Featured in the curry-dusted scallops below.
  • Thai Green Curry – a spicy Thai blend containing galangal, cumin, coriander, lemongrass, red Thai chiles, Lampong peppercorns, cilantro, Kaffir lime leaves, jalapeño, shallots, garlic and mild green chile powder. Featured in Green Curry Chicken with Mango.
  • Zanzibar – a sweet African blend containing coriander seeds, cumin seeds, yellow mustard seeds, fennel seeds, cinnamon, turmeric, brown sugar, paprika and cayenne. Featured in Zanzibar Carrots.
  • Ras el Hanout – meaning “top of the shop,” this Moroccan blend contains nutmeg, sea salt, black pepper, ginger, cardamom, mace, cinnamon, allspice, turmeric and saffron. Featured in Zanzibar Carrots and Moroccan Eggplant Stew.
  • Baharat (salt-free) – slightly spicy Middle Eastern blend containing paprika, Lampong pepper, cinnamon, coriander, cumin, cloves, ginger, cayenne, cardamom and nutmeg. Featured in Butternut Squash Soup with Apples and Carrots.
  • Chat Masala – Americanized version of an Indian blend containing mango powder, sea salt, cumin, black pepper, ajowan, guajillo chiles, peppermint, garlic, onion and citric acid. Featured in Slow Cooker Vegetable Curry.
  • Harissa Spice Mix – a fiery North African blend containing japone peppers, cumin, coriander, paprika, garlic, salt and caraway. I have used it mixed with oil and water to create a paste for marinating beef. Yum! Also featured in Curried Squash Seeds.

Vadouvan Curry-Dusted Scallops with Apple Broth

Now it’s time to talk Vadouvan curry blend. And scallops. And apples. Vadouvan is a French-inspired curry powder with a bit of a hickory smoked-onion taste. It’s milder than a lot of curries and marries well with seafood, poultry and vegetable dishes. I just checked the Savory Spice website and they say not to use Vadouvan in a high-heat cooking process, that it’s better in sauces and marinades. It’s a good thing I used medium-high heat for my curry-dusted scallops!

Don’t overcook your scallops or they will be rubbery. Just watch the sides of the scallops as they cook. You’ll see them go from translucent to opaque from the bottom up. When they are opaque halfway up the side, flip them. When they are opaque all the way up the side, they’re done. The broth contributes a very intense apple flavor and the celery and apple chunks lend texture to these mouth-watering curry-dusted scallops.

Curry Lovers gift set from Savory Spice Shop


Ready to get your curry on? I’m giving away the Curry Lovers gift set from Savory Spice Shop which includes Zanzibar Curry, Thai Green Curry, Medium Yellow Curry and Tikka Masala. To enter, visit the Savory Spice Shop Facebook page, click About, then come back here and leave a comment about any spice in the curry section. I’m sure they would also appreciate a LIKE while you’re there! The contest will run through Friday, April 20, 2012. The winner will be chosen at random on Saturday, April 21, 2012. You must be at least 18 years of age with a U.S. mailing address to win. No purchase is necessary; void where prohibited.

Disclosure: I received $30 worth of spices and the Front Range four-jar gift set free from Savory Spice Shop. I also received a Curry Lovers four-jar gift set to give away.

Vadouvan Curry-Dusted Scallops with Apple Broth
Scallops with French curry powder in savory apple broth
Serves: 4
  • 2 stalks celery, with leaves, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tart apple, coarsely chopped with skin, core and seeds (I used Granny Smith)
  • 5 cups unsweetened apple juice
  • 2 shallots, sliced
  • ½ teaspoon brown mustard seeds
  • 1 star anise

  • 12 large sea scallops, patted dry
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2-1/2 teaspoons Vadouvan curry blend from Savory Spice Shop or curry powder, divided
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 tart apple, peeled, cored and chopped into ¼-inch cubes (I used Granny Smith)
  • 1 stalk celery, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • ½ teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
  1. Place celery, apple, apple juice, shallots, mustard seeds, and star anise in a large heavy saucepan. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat.
  2. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for about 45 minutes or until liquid has reduced and is syrupy. Strain and set aside. Discard solids.

  1. Preheat oven to 250°F. Season scallops with salt and pepper. Place 2 teaspoons of Vadouvan curry blend on a small plate. Dip both flat sides of scallops in curry; place on large plate.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in heavy large skillet (preferably cast iron) over medium-high heat. Add scallops and cook until seared on first side, about 2 minutes. (Do not crowd the scallops in the pan or you won’t get a nice sear. You may need to do more than one batch, depending on the size of your pan.) Flip scallops and cook another 2 minutes or so, until seared on second side and barely opaque in the center. Transfer to a small baking sheet and place in oven to keep warm.
  3. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon of oil in the same skillet. Add apple and celery. Sauté until apple begins to soften, about 3 minutes. Add apple broth and remaining ½ teaspoon Vadouvan curry blend. Increase heat to high and boil until mixture thickens, about 10 minutes. Stir in vinegar. Season with salt, pepper and more vinegar, if desired.
  4. Divide broth mixture among 4 shallow pasta bowls. Add scallops and garnish with chives.
Too many carbs for you? Almost all of the carbs in this dish are coming from the apple juice. If you’d like to reduce the amount of carbs/sugar, use a mixture of apple juice and water for the liquid in the broth. The apple flavor won’t be quite as concentrated, but the scallops will still be delicious.
Nutrition Information
Calories: 296 Fat: 8g Saturated fat: 1g Carbohydrates: 50g Sugar: 41g Sodium: 121mg Fiber: 2g Protein: 9g Cholesterol: 15mg


  1. says

    Wow! Those scallops are cooked to perfection! I love curry too, and will be tucking away this recipe. Looking forward to your other spice posts. Great job!

  2. says

    I just saw galangal being used in a recipe for the first time, on the Food Network show, Chopped, last night. It looked a lot like ginger (a root that had to be peeled) but was more peppery.

    So, I”m really curious about the Thai Green Curry, (since it contains galangal) and the recipe you have planned to go with that.

  3. says

    Wow! That looks terrific. My husband is French and a meat lover. I’d cook him this Vadouvan curry recipe with apple broth – but with sausage instead of the scallops. It reminds me of when we first started cooking together and he showed me how to cook rice with apples!

  4. kate anderson says

    I feel rather dumb. I had no idea there were so many different curries. I didn’t even know Tikka Masala was a curry!! But boy o boy it is most definitely my favorite!

  5. Wendy says

    This looks delicious! Scallops are my favorite. I looked at the Savory Spice Shop and had to make it a favorite. I think I’d like the Madras curry best. I love mixes of tumeric, mustard and cumin. Plus it is salt free :)

  6. Erin B says

    I am interested in the vindaloo or cambodian lemongrass curry. Could it be possible to make vindaloo as spicy and yummy as they do in the restaurant?! woot! too bad the cambodian curry appears to no longer be available. Your curry dishes sound really good so far though!

  7. Debra Kerns says

    These scallops look amazing…seared nicely too! I think I would like to try Harissa Spice mix from the list of curries on Savory Spice Shop. In fact, I think I shall order some AND some Vadouvan!

  8. Shirley Wolfe says

    Not sure where I am suppose to leave this comment for the contest. But here it is, I hope I win. I love curry. The Zanzibar curry really intrigues me. I like the fact it is a no salt spice blend and it sounds delicious.

  9. nik says

    I’m so excited to find such fabulous curries…I’m a fiend for them! I’d love to try the Vietnamese Sweet Lemon Curry in a potato salad, the Madras Curry in a rich hummus, Vadouvan in a marinade, and Tan-Tan Moroccan Seasoning and Salt-Free Zanzibar Curry Powder in spiced cookie recipes. And the Moroccan, and Ethiopian, and oh goodgolly thank you so much for this link!!

  10. Bonnie K says

    I’d like to try the harissa spice mix. The scallops in the apple broth looks really good.

  11. Jenel says

    mmmm, Vietnamese Sweet Lemon Curry. It’s funny how much I love Vietnamese flavors yet indulge in them so rarely.

  12. Juley Allee says

    I always have Savory Spice’s Green Thai Curry and Savory Spice’s ground Turmeric in my cupboard–I use it all the time. My family loves it when I make their Green Thai Curry recipe with chicken–it’s as good as Wild Ginger’s–and I made it at home!!

  13. Crystal Jo says

    My favorite curry from Savory Spice shop is the Vietnamese Sweet Lemon Curry. It is a mild curry, great for those who don’t like a lot of kick. It is great on fish because of the lemon flavor and give amazing color. Thanks for the giveaway!

  14. says

    I love Savory Spice Shop! I tried their Thai Green Curry on steaks fresh out of an asian marinade, and it was surprisingly delicious! I’ve also used their yellow curry on asparagus, and I want to try the Zanzibar in some sort of monkey bread or other cinnamon-y treat ;)

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