Simple but satisfying, seared scallops make for a fantastic fall meal. Flavorful and filling, a good dish of seared scallops is a great way to enjoy a relaxing dinner. Don’t wait until you go to a restaurant to eat seared scallops. Here are some tips for the perfect at-home meal.
~PICK DRY SCALLOPS~
Wet scallops are soaked in preservative solutions and when cooked they don’t brown too well. Your best bet is to select dry scallops, which are not treated with chemicals. Dry scallops also have better (sweeter) flavor.
When you are ready to cook, make sure to pat the outside dry with a paper towel and have them sit for about 8-10 minutes. This helps avoid steaming the scallops when cooking.
~USE A HIGH SMOKE-POINT OIL~
Choosing the correct oil is important. Use a high smoke-point oil (such as avocado oil, canola). This will help prevent a quick burn of the oil.
~CHOOSE CAST IRON~
The best skillet is a cast-iron pan, which helps retain heat and will ensure the scallops cook fast but don’t steam. Cast-iron pans will keep the scallops juicy. When you put the scallops in the pan, pay attention to spacing. Keep them apart to prevent steaming.
Season with salt and pepper.
Scallops cook fast. Sear one side for two minutes then flip to season the other side. They will be ready to flip when they are brown and crispy on the bottom. You can add butter for flavor.
Once they are done, serve immediately. Scallops are best when they are hot and right out of the pan. Be sure to take the scallops out of your cast-iron pan and place on another dish because the pan will retain heat and keep cooking the scallops.
Scallops are best served fresh, but they are good for a couple of leftovers. You are fine with keeping scallops in the refrigerator for two to three days. Wrap the scallops in aluminum foil for airtight storage.
When reheating scallops, heat until they are warm; be careful not to overheat. In a pan, cook on low to medium heat. Flip the scallops after a minute or two. The ideal temperature is 140 degrees.