Friday, February 5, 2010

Sesame Orange Sea Scallops

There are countless varieties of citrus fruit available this time of year!

Okay, right about now I am absolutely dying for spring. We have a long way to go, though, and will have to make due. I guess I can deal with a little more bundling and a little more shivering. What I am sick of dealing with is out of season, mediocre produce. What’s left of the fall harvest is slim pickins and we aren’t anywhere near the first asparagus of the spring. There are really only a handful of fruits and vegetables at their peak in this deadest of dead produce times.

Citrus fruits are at their best right now, so don’t miss out! Right when our bodies need the extra vitamin C, hydration, and bioflavonoids the most, they come in by land and by sea and find their way into our supermarkets. This time of year, take advantage of the gorgeous and uncommon varieties of oranges, lemons, and specialty citrus.

This year I have enjoyed some deep red, jewel-like blood oranges, pink Cara Cara oranges, trusty crates of sweet clementines, and some very ripe and bursting pomelos (gigantic, mild grapefruit-type things). The Meyer lemons are here—they are a delightful hybrid of lemon and orange and offer a sweetness and fragrance that regular lemons don’t. There is ugli fruit and citron/Buddha’s hand, too. Also, kumquats are coming soon! Don’t miss out this year! Pick up something new and give it a try!

Citron or Buddha's Hand is popular in Europe and Asia

Citrus fruit is great on its own for juicing, zesting, and just eating, but here is a creative use of fresh, juicy oranges. It’s easy to make. It’s Friday night. Pick up a bottle of dry Riesling, a baguette, and some scallops. Starting with this sassy dinner, another winter weekend can now begin!

Sesame-Orange Sea Scallops
Serves about 4 (6 scallops each)

3/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1 T natural soy sauce
2 T dry white wine
1 T toasted sesame oil
½ t minced garlic
½ t minced fresh ginger
1 T sesame seeds
1 T thinly sliced scallions
2 T butter
24 large, fresh sea scallops

Snow pea shoots, Sunflower Sprouts, or other crunchy green, for garnish
Fresh lemon wedges

In a small pot, boil the freshly squeezed juice and reduce it down until it is half the liquid. Add soy sauce, white wine, sesame oil, garlic and ginger and whisk until garlic and ginger are broken up and mixture is uniform. Simmer 15 minutes. Add sesame seeds and scallions. Set aside.

Arrange greens on a serving plate or plates.

Melt butter in a large sauté pan or frying pan and heat until butter begins to bubble. Immediately add 12 scallops to the pan and sear on one side for 5 minutes. Spoon 2 T of orange mixture over, then flip them and cook 3-4 minutes on the next side, spooning another spoonful over them. Transfer to the serving plate and arrange neatly next to the sprouts or greens. Repeat with remaining 12 scallops.

Serve with fresh lemon wedges.


Deborah said...

ooooooooohhhh, I like this recipe! makes me HUNGRY!

Dan said...

I made this one. two thumbs up!