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Sea Scallops with Ginger-Lime-Butter Sauce

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Scallops in a nest

Scallops in a nest

Holly A. Heyser
I came up with this dish when I realized I had some sea scallops and some baby leeks to cook. I thought it would be cool to grill the leeks (scallions or green onions are fine, too) and nestle the seared scallops in like eggs in a nest. I made a ginger-lime butter to tie it all together. Figure on three sea scallops per person for an appetizer, five for a main course. This recipe serves 4.

Ingredients:

  • 20 sea scallops
  • 3 bunches of baby leeks, green onions or scallions
  • A 2-inch piece of ginger
  • Zest and juice of a lime
  • 1/2 stick of butter
  • Salt
  • Cayenne pepper for garnish
  • 3 T. olive oil

Preparation:

To make the sauce, let the butter come to room temperature. Peel the ginger and grate it fine. In a bowl, beat together the butter, ginger, lime zest and a little lime juice. Taste it, and add salt or more lime juice if need be. Put it back in the fridge to set up.

Cook the leeks or onions first. Wash the leeks, then trim the leek tops and cut off the roots, but leave them otherwise whole.

Make a foil pouch large enough to hold all the leeks and set it aside.

Toss the leeks with 2 tablespsoons of the the olive oil and then salt them well. Grill over medium-high heat until they start to blacken in spots. Take the right off the grill and put them in the foil pouch, closing it up to trap the steam.

Take the scallops out of the fridge and salt them well.

Turn the oven on to "warm," and set a pan inside to put the scallops.

Get a large saute pan good and hot, then put the remaining tablespoon of oil into it.

Pat the scallops dry and lay them down in the oil. Do not overcrowd them, or you will not get a good sear. Do this in batches.

Sear over medium-high-heat for at least 3 minutes. You want to see a good browning on the scallop. When you see that nice browning, turn the scallops and cook for another minute. Set in the oven while you do the second batch.

When all the scallops are done, put the ginger-lime butter into the pan and lower the heat to medium. Swirl around until the ginger gets aromatic.

Turn off the oven and remove the scallops. Toss them in the butter sauce and turn off the heat for the saute pan.

To serve, make a nest of leeks on the plate, then top with the scallops. Drizzle some butter over it all, then sprinkle just a dash of cayenne on top for garnish.

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  6. Scallop Recipe with Ginger Butter - A Recipe for Ginger Scallops and Grilled Leeks

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