Seared Tequila Scallops in a Cilantro Chile Sauce, photo by Sonia Mendez GarciaPhoto by Sonia Mendez Garcia

Seared Tequila Scallops in a Cilantro Chile Sauce

Cuisine: Fusion
Servings: 4-6 servings

Did I mention that my husband loves seafood? A lot! Thank goodness for that. These seared scallops met with Richard's approval: “It’s soooo good!” Every now and then it’s nice to prepare special dishes for ourselves and not only when we are having friends over. I purposely only prepared 6 scallops, because I was afraid of eating too many! It’s true! I had made scallops before, but they never turned out as tasty as these did. If you love scallops, this is a must-try.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup olive oil plus 2 tablespoons
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 3 chiles de árbol crushed
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 pound jumbo sea scallops
  • 1/4 cup silver tequila
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon plus more for garnish
  • salt
  • Fresh cracked pepper

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Directions

  1. In a medium bowl, combine the 1/3 cup olive oil, the lime juice, soy sauce, cilantro, chile de arbol and garlic. Season the scallops lightly with salt and pepper and add them to the marinade. Cover and chill for 30 minutes.
  2. After 30 minutes, preheat 2 tablespoons of olive oil to medium/high heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the scallops from the marinade and onto a plate while the oil heats up. Add the scallops to the hot pan and sear until browned and opaque in the center, about 2 to 3 minutes per side.
  3. Transfer the scallops to a serving plate. Quickly add the butter to the same hot pan. Add the marinade leftover from bowl, tequila and juice of 1/2 a lemon. Cook at a low simmer to reduce the sauce slightly, taste for salt and pepper. Pour the sauce over scallops, and serve right away. Serve with rice or your favorite vegetable side.

Chef Notes

To prepare great seared scallops, you must do this: Line a plate with paper towels, add the uncooked scallops and take a few layered paper towels and gently press and soak up any excess water in the scallops. You want them to be as dry as possible. If you do not want to cook with tequila, just add some chicken broth or white wine instead.

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