Make the orzo
Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil over medium-high heat.
Melt the butter in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the pumpkin and shallot and cook, stirring, until the pumpkin is almost tender and the shallot is golden, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until the pumpkin is completely tender, about 2 minutes more. Set aside. Cook the orzo in the boiling water until al dente. Reserve 1 cup of the water and drain. Add the orzo, parsley, and marjoram to the skillet, along with 1/2 cup of the reserved pasta water, and stir until blended and heated through, adding more pasta water if necessary, about 1 minute. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
Cook the Scallops
Pat the scallops dry and season generously with salt and pepper. Melt the butter in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the scallops to the skillet and cook, flipping once, until browned on both sides yet just barely cooked through, about 1½ minutes per side. Transfer to a plate. Stir the shallot and garlic into the butter, add the wine, and bring to a boil, scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Stir in the cream and marjoram and boil until thickened, about 1 minute. Return the scallops and any liquid to the skillet and stir briefly over medium heat. Divide the orzo and scallops among four plates and drizzle with the sauce. Sprinkle with the pepitas and parsley and serve.
A simple salad or even a bean soup would be a fine start to the meal.
nutrition information (per serving):
23, Fat Calories
210, Saturated Fat
30, Monounsaturated Fat
57, Polyunsaturated Fat
Photo: Scott Phillips