Monday, February 14, 2011

Cold Marinated Scallops

Susanna Foo's Cold Marinated Scallops

Susanna Foo Chinese Cuisine is well on its way to becoming the second unofficial cookbook of Stellar Recipes, joining the ever-reliable America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook. Before serving poached pears for dessert during the first of The Gastronomer's 2010 birthday dinners, I made these scallops as a starter. Despite not being a tomato lover, I found them to be quite delicious, but The Gastronomer later told me she thought they were a bit too oily. Nevertheless, it's a very interesting recipe--I had never cooked with Bloody Mary mix before, and certainly never thought of mixing it with ginger, scallions, etc.

Recipe by Susanna Foo Chinese Cuisine
  • 1 pound medium sea scallops
  • 1/2 cup corn oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 1 tablespoon peeled, grated ginger root
  • 1/2 cup scallions, white part only, diced (about 3)
  • 1 small tomato, diced
  • 1/2 cup bottled Bloody Mary mix
  • Coarse salt
  • Freshly Ground Pepper
  • 1/4 julienned basil or cilantro leaves
Wash the scallops and pat dry. Place them in a single layer between sheets of paper towels until they are completely dry.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over high heat. When the oil is hot but not smoking, about 300 degrees F, add the scallops. Cook, turning, until the scallops are just cooked, about 3 minutes. Do not overcook, or they will toughen.

Using a slotted spoon, remove the scallops to a strainer and drain. Place them in a bowl, toss with the lemon juice, and refrigerate.

Remove all but 1 tablespoon of oil from the skillet and lower the heat to medium. Add the onion, gingerroot, and scallions. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Turn off the heat, add the tomato and Bloody Mary mix, and stir to combine. Let the sauce cool.

Just before serving, drain the scallops. Spoon the sauce over them and toss to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with the julienned basil or cilantro leaves and serve immediately.

Yield: 6 servings
Estimated Start-to-Finish Time: Not given
Actual Start-to-Finish Time: 2 hours

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Arugula and Edamame Crostini

Arugula and Edamame Crostini

One more from the CSA box--The Gastronomer did most of the work preparing this one, but the honor of blogging about it has fallen to me. We don't like arugula enough to use up a whole bunch in salads, so this recipe was a great alternative. The bitterness/bite of the green is actually quite nice in a spread, and I thought the mint garnish was an excellent touch. The recipe doesn't actually use all that much arugula, so we had to make it twice. Not a problem--I enjoyed having the crostini as an appetizer many nights in a row.

Recipe by Gourmet, May 2009, courtesy of Epicurious.
  • 1 cup shelled fresh or frozen edamame (soybeans; 3/4 pounds in pods)
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus additional for drizzling
  • 1 1/2 cups packed baby arugula (1 1/2 ounces), divided
  • 3 tablespoons grated Pecorino Toscano or Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 1/4 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 baguette
  • 1 garlic clove, halved crosswise
  • 16 mint leaves
Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle.

Cook edamame in boiling water, uncovered, until tender, 3 to 4 minutes, then drain and transfer to an ice bath to stop cooking.

Pulse edamame in a food processor until very coarsely chopped, then transfer half of mixture to a large bowl. Add 1/4 cup oil, 1/2 cup arugula, cheese, lemon zest and juice, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper to soybeans in processor and purée until smooth. Add to bowl. Coarsely chop remaining cup arugula and gently fold into edamame mixture.

Cut 16 diagonal slices (1/3 inch thick) from baguette and put in a 4-sided sheet pan. Drizzle with remaining tablespoon oil. Bake until pale golden and crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Rub with cut side of garlic.

Spoon edamame mixture onto baguette toasts, then drizzle with oil and top with mint.

Yield: 8 servings
Estimated Start-to-Finish Time: Not Given
Actual Start-to-Finish Time: 40 minutes
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