Live scallops a la @jsolans

Live scallops are so good. When you can get your hands on them, don’t even think, just buy them. I haven’t asked for his permission yet, but I know @jsolans would be happy to share some (not all!) of his cooking secrets. I’ve had the chance to watch him cook this live scallops dish a while ago, and last Saturday, I decided to give a try myself.

This dish was part of a 5 courses meal, so I’ve only had 1 scallop per person (5 people total). It’s very straight forward, and yet very tasty. It plays with the combination of hot and cold (that one is for you Katy Perry!), which makes you mind go absolutely nuts…

First, peel and dice 2-3 tomatoes. Let them marinate in balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, and olive oil. You can get creative here and add your own personal touch: garlic, chives, parsley, spices etc… anything you like could bring something new to this recipe. Set aside for 1-2 hours.

Prepare the scallops and keep 1 shell per guest. Preparing scallops may sound like a big deal, but it’s actually very easy. A couple of secrets: don’t soak the scallops in water. They’ll be so much less tasty. I actually even think that some stores soak them in water to make them bigger before they sell them! Hold the scallop with the flat side up. With a knife, go along the shell and cut the scallop away. Open the shell and remove the scallop completely. You may need to use the knife, just be careful not to damage the scallop. The only part you want to keep is the white body, and for some, the coral. All the rest has to go! Don’t hesitate to use your hands, but again, be very careful not to destroy it! Rinse under water and pat dry. Sprinkle some salt and pepper, and let rest.

Dice 2 shallots. In a pan, melt some butter and sweat the shallots. In the same time, under high heat, melt some butter in another pan, then reduce the heat to medium high. Cook the scallops, 45 seconds on each side. You could cook them a bit longer, depending on the size, but don’t over cook them.

To serve, put some of the shallots in a shell, with some tomatoes, and add the scallops on top.

Enjoy! And thanks @jsolans!

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