Is there anything better than perfectly seared scallops? It’s a staple in many fine restaurants, both as an appetizer and main course, and is easy to make at home, although it can be tricky to get right. The key to success is perfect searing, which gives the juicy clam a delicious caramel coating. But if you buy scallops at your local supermarket, getting that sizzling sensation will be difficult, if not impossible.
        According to Serious Eats, most scallops found in supermarkets are “wet,” meaning they have been processed in a solution containing sodium tripolyphosphate (STP). In contrast, “dry” scallops are natural and have not been treated with any chemicals. STP is a preservative that, although safe to eat, can give the scallops a soapy taste and, worse, cause the scallops to absorb almost 30% of the excess moisture! Once the scallops hit the hot pan, all the excess water is released as steam, making it difficult to get the golden brown sear you want. However, there is one simple step that will help you achieve a perfect sear even when working with wet scallops.
        This simple scallop cooking step only requires an extra 10 minutes of prep time. A couple of chefs explain that the brine helps even out the flavors of wet scallops while removing chemical flavors from the STP, and recommend mixing 4 cups room temperature water with 2 tablespoons kosher salt and letting the scallops sit in the mixture for 10 minutes. Marinating also adds flavor to the dish as it also seasons the inside of the scallops. For even more flavor, you can add a little lemon juice to the brine. Be sure to pat the scallops dry after removing them from the brine.
        The Gazette reports that marinating is especially important for wet scallops, but the method can be used for dry scallops, as well as for more delicate scallops with a firmer texture, although it is not as critical. To really improve the quality of your scallops, Cook’s Illustrated says, try brushing them with a little butter at the end to cook them all the way through. The next time you cook scallops at home, try these simple steps to create a simple and delicious dish that will delight and impress your guests.

Post time: Nov-02-2023

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