Scallop Cardinal makes a handsome substitute for that rib roast or scraggly old bird, the turkey. French cardinal sauce is a rich cream sauce with sherry and maybe even egg yolks. However, for our festive dish you will probably find a standard butter and flour white sauce with sherry added is rich enough. You will want to mold in a bowl cooked white rice - jasmine rice works well- as a bottom layer. Add gutted medium sized scallops which have been quickly stirred into browned butter. Top with more rice, stir in enough of your sauce so the whole thing sticks together and then turn it out onto a serving plate. A layer of the cream sauce on top and drizzling down the sides will hold your scallops for garnishing.
As long as you are breaking with tradition. you may also be wishing for a gluten-free version of this. A very useful way to make a thickened cream sauce with no flour is to simply reduce half and half milk or cream by gently cooking it down in a heavy pan. Add your sherry while it reduces.
You will indeed be celebrating the season!