Sunday, July 7, 2019

Pan-Seared Scallops with Chorizo and Corn

Treat scallops to the flavorful oil left behind when you cook chorizo—it’s basically liquid gold. Serves 4


3 ears of corn, husked
3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
2 oz. smoked Spanish chorizo, finely chopped
12 scallions, white and pale green parts only, thinly sliced
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/2-1 serrano chile (depending on heat), finely chopped 3/4 tsp. kosher salt, plus more
1 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup chopped cilantro
12 large sea scallops (about 1 lb.), side muscle removed, patted dry
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1 lime, halved Lime wedges (for serving)


Cut kernels from corncobs and place in a medium bowl. Using the back of a chef’s knife, scrape milk from cobs into the bowl; discard cobs. Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a medium saucepan over medium. Cook chorizo, stirring occasionally, until it starts to get crisp, about 2 minutes. 

Carefully pour chorizo oil into a small bowl (use a slotted spoon to hold back chorizo); set chorizo oil aside. Return chorizo pan to medium heat and add scallions, garlic, chile, 1 Tbsp. olive oil, and ¾ tsp. salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened but not browned, about 2 minutes. Add corn kernels and cook, stirring occasionally, until bright yellow and softened, 5–7 minutes. Remove from heat and let corn mixture cool in pan 5 minutes. Gently mix in buttermilk and cilantro. Taste and season with more salt if needed. Season scallops generously with salt. 

Heat reserved chorizo oil and remaining 1 Tbsp. olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high until just beginning to smoke. Cook scallops on one side, reducing heat if they are taking on too much color and moving around in pan for even browning, until a golden brown crust forms on the bottom, about 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low and turn scallops over. Add butter to skillet and, using a spoon, baste scallops with butter 30 seconds. Transfer scallops to a plate. Squeeze halved lime over. Divide corn mixture among plates and arrange scallops on top. Serve with lime wedges for squeezing over. Yum Yum!

Note: You can add the buttermilk to the corn mixture before allowing it to cool enough. The recipe says let it cool for 5 minutes. You can also let it cool for 20, then added the buttermilk, and then placed the pan on very very low heat to warm up before serving. If you can’t find smoked chorizo use beef smoked sausage instead. It will still be fantastic. 

 Substitution for buttermilk can be heavy cream or coconut milk.

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