This simple seared scallops dish comes from The Lobster Place in the Chelsea Market Cookbook. Everything, from seafood to fresh pasta, tastes good in a brown butter sauce; it looks fancy but takes no time at all to put together.
Season one side of each of the scallops with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a very large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until it is very hot but not smoking. Add the scallops, seasoned-side down, and season their tops with salt and pepper. So they develop that all-important seared surface, cook the scallops without moving them until the underside is well browned, about 5 minutes.
Flip the scallops over. Add 2 tablespoons of the butter to the skillet. When it melts, constantly spoon the butter over the scallops, letting them turn a deeper shade of brown, about 1 minute. Transfer them to a platter.
Reduce the heat to medium. Stir in the wine and bring it to a boil. Remove from the heat. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon butter, the chives, and lemon juice, and stir well. Pour the sauce over the scallops and serve them immediately.