Sunday, January 29, 2012

Seared Scallops with Sauteed Asparagus Recipe

They're almost like adult marshmallows (albeit a lot more expensive and probably never cooked over a campfire). And like marshmallows, they're very easy to cook, but with one false move, you may only have seconds for a graceful recovery.  However, unlike your charred, fire-ridden, .99-cent cylindrical collection of sugar - overcooked scallops will not be soft and mushy inside, they'll be tough, chewy, and sad.

But let's go back to how easy they're to make for your date:

  • 3/4 - 1lb of Fresh Sea Scallops (10/20 ct)
  • Salt and Pepper
  • One more additional seasoning (I like Cajun, or cinnamon and sugar, or blackening seasoning)
  • Olive oil or canola oil
  • 2-3 tablespoons of butter
  • Skillet (I'm a fan of the cast-iron skillet)

Instructions (~4.5 minutes cook time)
  1. Lightly coat the skillet with olive oil or canola oil with a paper towel (if not seasoned)
  2. Preheat a cast-iron skillet on medium-high
  3. Add a few tablespoons of butter
  4. Season the scallops with your salt, pepper, and seasoning du jour (The flavors and spice of pre-mixed seasonings like the "Slap ya momma" brand or Cajun seasoning will be enhanced when you cook them, so use them sparingly)
  5. Put scallops in the skillet for about 3.5 minutes
  6. Flip and cook for 1 more minute or so
  7. Remove the scallops (they should feel like a medium rare steak)

  • The scallops should be off-white. Scallops that are white are treated with sodium tripolyphosphate and while "not harmful," I'll go with the off-white version...
  • The scallops will continue to cook even off the stove. This is the trick to fast cooking seafood - remove the seafood from the pan BEFORE it is completely cooked through!
  • If you cut one of the scallops, it should be about 1/3" opaque white with a slightly translucent middle (again, you can't get her sick off of FRESH, undercooked scallops)

For the visual minded, here are the steps in pictures:
1 lb of 10/20 Sea Scallops

Salt, Pepper, and Cajun. A little over-seasoned

Scallops in the Skillet

Flipped Scallops. 3.5 minutes in

Scallops. Opaque.

Finished Plate

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