Pan-Seared Scallops with fresh tomato-lemon sauce
1 large, ripe tomato, diced (remove some of the seeds)
1-2 green onions, very finely sliced
1 large clove of fresh, local garlic, finely minced
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tbsp. good quality olive oil
A small handful of fresh basil, torn or roughly chopped
Salt, as needed
Oil (neutral), as needed
*KEY TIP: Purchase a U10 or a 10-20 size FAS (frozen at sea) scallop. We buy Comeau brand scallops from Nova Scotia at T&J Seafoods in Kitchener. Thaw them in the refrigerator overnight.
- Make tomato lemon sauce: In a bowl mix together tomato, green onion, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil & herbs. Season with a few good pinches of salt. Set aside at room temperature, make up to a few hours ahead of time.
- Place scallops on a paper-towel lined plate. Remove the abductor muscle (a small, opaque white piece attached to the scallop. Some may not have one). Season very well with salt (pepper will burn).
- Pan-sear scallops: preheat a frying pan over medium-high heat. For best results, use a stainless steel or aluminum frying pan, not a non-stick. Preheating the pan (without any oil in it) is key to getting that crust. Put your hood fan on!
- Once your pan is hot (you'll place your hand over top of the pan, and only be able to hold it there for about 5 seconds), drizzle in a neutral oil, 1-2 tsp.
- Your pan will smoke so act quickly: quickly PLACE (don't drop) your scallops onto the pan. Allow to cook for about 90 seconds, undisturbed before turning over for a further 60-90 seconds. Good quality scallops should be served medium to medium-well (i.e. there should be a thin line of translucency in the center of the scallop).
- Serve immediately in a shallow dish with tomato lemon sauce, and some warm baguette to mop up all the juices. Enjoy!