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This simple appetizer was inspired by a couple of late harvest ears of corn, the last of the garden zucchini and a request from my husband that I make something with them.
If you wanted, you could make this a main course, just add more!
Fresh scallops should smell of the sea.
There is no difference in flavor really with white or yellow ones. The only thing you know for sure when eating one that is orange is, it’s a female. The orange coloring is caused by an overabundance of zeaxanthin, but this does not affect flavor.
Get large scallops and rinse them well under cold running water to remove any residual sand. Then, looking at them, you should be able to see the mussel where the scallop attached itself to its shell. Remove that as it is hard and not pleasant to eat.
Pat them dry. Well dry. The secret to a well-seared scallop is to make sure they are totally dry. If they aren’t they will “steam” rather than fry and brown.
Be sure to cook your scallops in a hot pan, and please, don’t overcook them. Just to opaque…a little underdone is better than overdone. Overdone scallops are rubbery, and probably a big reason many people say they don’t like them.
Don’t mess with them too much while they are cooking, leave them to fully brown on one side, once brown, turn, brown the other side and remove.
I used a basil oil in this recipe for Fresh Corn with Seared Scallops which worked out really well. If you don’t have any, you could make your own by infusing some extra virgin olive oil with some fresh chopped basil. Simply put 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil into a microwaveable bowl, add some chopped basil (about 1 cup) and microwave for 30 seconds. Remove and allow to cool. Strain out the basil. Use it immediately or store in the refrigerator for up to a week. The oil will solidify but will turn to liquid again once it is brought to room temperature. Or, you could just use some regular extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle some chopped basil over the finished dish, either way, it’s all good.
LindySez: If you wanted, you could make this a main course, just add more!
Heat the basil oil in a small saute pan set over medium-high heat. Add the corn, zucchini and shallot; saute until the vegetables are crisp tender, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
In a frying pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Pat the scallops dry with a paper towel, season with salt and pepper. Place the scallops into the hot pan and sear, about 2 minutes per side (take care not to over-cook).
To serve: Place the corn mixture into the bottom of wide warmed bowls, top with the scallops and pour the juice from the pan over.
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