Fresh sea scallops are an absolute delicacy, but their quick-cooking properties make them slightly intimidating when pan searing with high heat. Perfectly prepared sea scallops should have a light crust on the outside, but remain moist and tender on the inside. It’s important you start with fresh sea scallops that have a sweet aroma and translucent color.
To achieve the perfect sear you need a non-stick pan that can withstand relatively high heat, such as a cast iron skillet. Additionally, sea scallops are naturally moist, so you must thoroughly pat dry before cooking or they won’t brown properly. Remember that scallops cook very fast and continue to cook after removing from heat. While you can purchase fresh sea scallops from local seafood markets anytime of the year, there’s no better season than the summer to enjoy this light dish that highlights the shellfish’s delicate flavor.
Prepare rice according to directions on package. In a large mixing bowl combine mango, cucumber, ginger, lime juice, one tablespoon of olive oil, cilantro, salt and pepper, then set aside. Rinse scallops and pat dry with paper towels before seasoning with salt and fresh ground pepper. Heat the remaining olive oil and one teaspoon of butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Place scallops broadside in pan and don’t move them until it’s time to flip—no more than two minutes per side.
- 16 sea scallops
- 2 c. jasmine rice
- 2 mangos, cut into cubes
- 1 cucumber, peeled and cubed
- 1 tbsp. ginger, freshly grated
- 2 tsp. lime juice, fresh squeezed
- 2 tsp. EVOO
- 1 tsp. butter
- 1/2 c. cilantro, chopped
- Kosher salt
- Fresh ground pepper
Arrange four scallops per serving over rice, add tropical salsa and garnish with cilantro. Serve immediately and enjoy!