We’ve been focused on eating better. After my recent hospital stay, it’s even more important to eat well and take care of myself. We’re adding healthy options to our regular repertoire of meals and trying to stay away from red meat! I say “trying” because I will never be able to give up a gooey cheeseburger or a fabulously grilled steak! However, those dinners will be farther apart now!
This week, we had one of our favorite seafood treats – scallops! Do I get bonus points for NOT wrapping them in bacon? I know, I know! I say “healthy” and then go right into bacon. What can I say? I’m doing my best to make Paula and Emeril proud! :-) It’s a pork fat thing.
I was looking for a way to use the lemon oil from my foodie pen-pal and this was a perfect (and healthy!) opportunity!
Don’t let this meal intimidate you. It is easy to make perfect pan-seared scallops. They are a quick, simple mid-week meal, or you can save them for something special.
12-16 Sea Scallops (about 1 lb)
1 TBLS Vegetable Oil (I used a lovely Lemon flavored oil for mine, but I don’t know how easy that is to find. Using vegetable oil works beautifully too!)
1 TBLS Unsalted Butter
Salt and Pepper to taste
For Lemon Buttered Orzo
1 1/2 cups cooked Orzo Pasta
2 TBLS Chives, snipped
1 TBLS Unsalted Butter
1-2 tsps Lemon Juice – fresh squeezed
Lemon Zest to garnish
Cook the Orzo first, according to your package directions until just al dente. Drain and immediately toss with butter, lemon juice and chives. Keep warm while you are cooking the scallops.
Check your scallops carefully and if necessary, remove the small side muscle on the scallops. Rinse scallops with cold water and pat dry with a paper towel. It’s important the scallops are completely dry so they develop a beautiful crust.
Heat a 12-inch non-stick sauté pan over a high heat. Add a tablespoon of unsalted butter and a tablespoon of vegetable oil. The oil/butter mixture needs to be very hot before you add the scallops! Lightly salt and pepper the scallops. When the oil just begins to smoke, add the scallops to the pan. Make sure there is plenty of space between each one. Sear the scallops for 1 1/2 – 2 minutes on each side. The scallops should have a light brown crust on each side while still being somewhat white in the center.
Serve seared scallops immediately on a bed of lemon buttered Orzo. Garnish with a few more chives and a bit of lemon zest! Enjoy!!