Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Scallops. It's what's for dinner.

I've been meaning to write about this scallop cooking process for about a year. Yikes. Well, that's what this year is all about, getting to all the baloney that got left behind because it wasn't critical to our survival during Matt's last year of undergrad.

So, back when I needed to lose some weight for Becca's wedding, I started doing Medifast. It worked amazing, I lost about 25 pounds in 2 months. Medifast consists of 5 of their own packaged foods, and then one of your own. But yours needs to be lean-n-green, meaning protein and veggies. No carbs, no fruit. So I needed to make sure that the protein I ate was yummy to keep me going. So if you wanted steak, you only got 5 oz., chicken 6oz, but any kind of seafood was 7 oz. Time to figure out how to eat something besides steamed crabs every night. :)

A few searches on the internet, a few trial and errors (including one big flop of boiled ones at poor Becca's house) and here it is.

You will need:
   - these should be the larger ones if you can, and they need to be dry. If they are wet when you get them,         rinse them off, pat dry, and set on paper towels in the refrigerator until you need them. If they have too much liquid in them, they will just boil in the pan. Yuck. 
Olive Oil - a few swirls
Butter - 1 tbsp
Salt and Pepper to taste

Dry scallops as described above. You can also choose to salt and pepper them on both sides at this point, I think it soaks in better.

Heat non-stick pan over medium high heat with a few swirls of olive oil. (If you are using a non-stick pan I guess it's possible to do this without any oil to lower the calories even more). Place scallops in the pan one by one.

Let cook for about 3 and a half minutes. They should have begun to caramelize (i.e. turn brown) on their bottom side.

Flip scallops over and cook another 3 and a half minutes, depending on how big and thick they are. When you do this, add a few pats of butter to the pan and swirl around. Then you can use a spoon to scoop up the juices in the pan and drizzle on top of the scallops as they cook. This way a little bit of butter goes a long way.

When they are finished cooking, they should be firm to the touch. It's kind of hard to explain when they are done, and I prefer to have them more done than not. But you can definitely over cook them for sure.

Let me know what you think!

(more thoughts on why I am not doing Medifast anymore in another post to come)