Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Seared Sea Scallops with Yuzu Ginger Glaze on Greens with Miso Sesame Dressing

Seared Sea Scallops with Yuzu Ginger Glaze and Miso Sesame Dressing
I'm slowly making progress on my list. I cooked scallops for the first time the other day and I didn't screw up and turn them into little hockey pucks! Hooray! I usually don't make these type of fancy-pants dishes with mile long names but this one was truly stellar. Now that I know how to sear scallops, I can make this dish for company because it looks and sounds super gourmet. ;) But just between you and me, it's as simple as plating some prewashed bagged greens, whisking together a dressing, and searing the scallops in literally 2 minutes. You don't even need the yuzu ginger glaze but it does add a nice "flavor profile". The dressing itself is my new favorite and it's a nice change from the vinaigrettes I usually make. After seeing how easy it is to cook scallops, now I don't have to pay $15 for a tiny plate of salad or deal with an inattentive waiter, I just get the beau to do the dishes.

Seared Sea Scallops with Yuzu Ginger Glaze on Greens with Miso Sesame Dressing
Serves 4 as an appetizer

1 1/2 pound sea scallops 10/20s (10 - 20 per pound)
Salt and pepper
Vegetable or canola oil

Yuzu ginger glaze
2 Tbsp yuzu marmalade
1/2 tsp grated ginger

Miso Sesame Dressing
1 Tbsp miso (yellow or white)
1 Tbsp mirin
1 Tbsp rice vinegar
1 Tbsp mayo
1 tsp sesame oil

7 oz. salad greens: mixed greens, baby arugula, baby spinach, or watercress will all work (may not need the whole bag)
2 Tbsp sesame seeds (white, black, or combination), toasted in skillet

Since the scallops cook in literally 2 minutes, the prep for the rest of the dish must be done before you begin cooking the scallops. The dressing and glaze can be made ahead of time.

Season the scallops with salt and pepper and keep them sandwiched between two layers of paper towels in order to draw away any moisture from the scallops because they will exude a lot of moisture.

Even though the arugula I bought was prewashed, I like to give it one more wash, then spin dry in the salad spinner. Set aside to dry.

Meanwhile prepare the rest of the components for the dish. In a small saucepan, add the yuzu marmalade and 2 tablespoons of moisture. Bring to boil, lower to a simmer and simmer until it is your desired consistency. Whisk in the minced ginger, remove from heat and set aside.

In an empty skillet add the sesame seeds and toast over medium heat until they are golden brown, about 5 minutes. I use a 1:1 ratio of white to black sesame seeds. It's much easier to gauge the doneness of white seeds but a combination of the two give a better aesthetic appeal.

Plate the greens before cooking the scallops.

Heat a nonstick or cast iron skillet over high heat. You want the pan very hot in order to get a good sear on the scallops. The scallops are cooked in two batches so the liquid doesn't flood the pan and they steam and stew in their juice. Cooking for two is easier since you can divide the recipe in half and cook the scallops in one batch. Add 1 tablespoon of oil and pat the scallops dry right before you add them and add half of the scallops in the pan. The scallops should have plenty of room. Cook them on the first side for 1 - 2 minutes. They should have a golden brown crust. Remove the first batch to a plate, do not cook the second side yet. Wipe out the skillet by holding a wad of paper towels with tongs and add 1 tablespoon of oil to the pan again. Wait for the oil to heat up and add the rest of the scallops, cooking them 1 - 2 minutes a side. Now flip these scallops over to the second side to sear and add the first batch back into the pan. Cook the scallops for only 30 seconds to a minute on the second side. The second side doesn't have to be cooked as long or seared for color, you only want to cook them through.

Divide the scallops onto the four plates, with the seared side up for presentation. To glaze the scallops, you can either spoon the glaze on each scallop or just toss all of them in the glaze to coat. I chose to spoon the glaze on, it was a bit more fussy and more work, but it looks a little better. :) Then drizzle the plate with dressing and sprinkle some sesame seeds on top.

Serve immediately.


TNelson said...

We have also just discovered the ease and flavor of seared scallops at our house. Last week we had a large spinach salad with a sweet-sour type of vinegarette. The warm freshly seared scallops were placed on top of the greens and drizzled with the vinegarette - so many delicious flavors. It will be sure to be in regular rotation on our menus. I am anxious to try your dressing - I had a wonderful fish with a miso dressing many years ago and never forgot the wonderful flavor. This may be tomorrow night's dinner. Thanks for the recipe!

Wandering Chopsticks said...

I've only cooked scallops that one time because they were on sale. :(
Quick and easy to cook but just so expensive.

I like the use of marmalade. Perhaps I'll try that with salmon?

Peabody said...

Nothing wrong with hockey pucks. :) Well, not a dinner. Your scallops look so tasty.

Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) said...

The yuzu marmalade intrigues me. Where can you find that -- an Asian grocery?

Kalyn Denny said...

Gorgeous! I love scallops.

Marsha said...

The scallops look amazing, but I feel duty bound to give you fair warning about another item on your list. I'm a try anything once kind of gal, so when presented with the opportunity of a bacon martini last weekend, I took it. Not only could I not finish it, my cast iron stomach still rolls a bit every time I think about it. More than the disgusting taste, more than the vile appearance of raw bacon floating in liquid, it's the memory of the oily coating nothing would take out of my mouth for HOURS that really activates my gag reflex. If you follow through with your intention to make bacon vodka, for the love of all that is holy, don't drink it straight!

Anonymous said...

I would for sure order that at a restaurant probably pay good money for that. That looks fantastic!

pam said...

What a gorgeous meal! I love your list of things you want to try. What a great idea!

RecipeGirl said...

Nice job with your first time scallops!! I love seared scallops, and have made my 6 year old a scallop-lover too. I'd put these on some greens and call it dinner myself!

Susan @ SGCC said...

Those scallops look so succulent! I've heard a lot about yuzu, but I've never tried it. Where would you find it?

Unknown said...

Pretty sure you aren't supposed to have raw bacon in vodka. Bacon vodka is bacon fat which is poured into vodka, which extracts the flavors from the fat. You then refridgerate the vodka which solidifies the fats on top and then can be removed, leaving you with clear vodka without any oily residue.

Amy said...

Scallop and spinach salad sounds delicious! Hope you like the dressing and this recipe.

Oh I know what you mean. I'm always really hesitant to buy them because they're so freaking expensive. :( But I guess it's still cheaper to cook them at home, get more scallops for your buck (or $10). :) The glaze would be great with fish.

They're okay on the ice, just not on my dinner plate. :)

I actually found it at Trader Joe's (gosh they have all sorts of interesting stuff there). I'll post a picture soon!


Oh my goodness... raw bacon in vodka? I'm with you, that sounds rather vile. I was thinking of extracting the bacon essence with the vodka, clarifying it of any fat, and then cooking with it, maybe a Penne alla Bacon Vodka. :)

Thank you! Even though scallops are pricey, it's still cheaper to make at home. :)

Thanks! I'm slowly making progress on that list...

Gotta love a dinner that cooks in less than 2 minutes. :)

I found my yuzu marmalade at Trader Joe's. I've never seen a fresh fruit, and they are supposedly very pricey ($3 - $4 each?).

Cook Fu said...

This was fantastic with the huge scallops I got at Whole Foods (6 to a pound!!!)


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