Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Sesame Ginger Grilled Scallops

Serves 2

This recipe came together when I found the first spring onions of the season and dry scallops on special. I have made this many times since often using the variations given below. The key word here is "dry" - "dry scallops" are scallops that have not been soaked in phosphates  which cause them to absorb water and loose flavor; soaking in phosphates tends to make the scallops "look better" to some consumers and prevents them from losing water hence weight, hence market profits. Dry scallops are occasionally, but not usually, advertised as such; you will probably need to ask the fish monger if the scallops are "dry"/unsoaked.

These are especially good served on a bed of Sauteed Bok Choy and/or with fresh Asparagus


Dry scallops (about 1/2 to 2/3 pound total)
for no more than 30 minutes in:

2 T soy sauce/tamari
1 T sesame oil
1 T fresh ginger, minced

(Optional) Brush

3 large scallions cut in half lengthwise or 6 thin scallion with:

1 t olive oil
1/2 t sesame oil

Heat grill to high. (Or set oven to broil)

NOTE: Scallops can also be cooked under the broiler (3-4 minutes on a side depending on size).*

Put scallops on two wooden (previously soaked in water) or metal skewers and coat with a glaze of:

2 t  lime juice
2 t  maple syrup

Put scallops and onions on grill; cook on high to sear both sides of scallops and then reduce heat to medium. Cook scallops ~3 minutes a side, basting with glaze. Cook onions until wilted but not charred. Remove from heat.

(Optional) Roll scallops while still on skewer in:

Toasted sesame seeds


In lieu of scallops, use white flat fish such as flounder or sole. Marinate fish and add glaze/lime juice just before cooking. Use the broiler method, cooking 3-4 minutes on a side depending on thickness. Sprinkle with sesame seeds when done.


In lieu of scallops, uses ~6 21-25 count shrimp per person. Marinate shrimp and add maple syrup but no lime juice.  Grill ~2 1/2 minutes per side on hot grill.

* April 2013:  After cooking Grilled Scallops with Parsnip-Fennel Puree, I've decided the hot cast iron griddle on a grille or stove is the best way to cook scallops.  Follow the recipe above but when it comes to cooking forget the skewers, heat the griddle to hot, add olive oil to coat and heat, then add the drained (and slightly dried) marinated scallops.

Scallops served with Sauteed Bok Choy  and Grilled Scallions.

Reviewed 7/9/2017

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