Grilling season is slowly coming to an end with the onset of some cold weather around these parts, but there is still time to make some of my favorites, such as these grilled scallops. I always stretch grilling season as long as possible, first off cause grilled things taste delicious, but also because it generally means I do the prep and Ry does the actual cooking.
I do need to warn you about one caveat with this recipe, and that is the importance of getting good scallops. I’ve gotten some not great scallops before, so I’ll speak about this from experience. You always want to make sure you’re getting “undipped” scallops, they might also be labeled as “dry”. What this really denotes is that they aren’t treated with sodium tripolyphosphate. In fact, just make sure any fish you get isn’t treated with sodium tripolyphosphate. It makes whatever protein you’re cooking get all oozy, it’ll never brown correctly and regarding those scallops, they won’t have that delish sweet scallop flavor.
If you’ve ever cooked with dipped scallops, or wet scallops, you would know. You can put them in a searing hot pan and they just kinda steam and get rubbery, not at all what we’re going for here. Besides just asking your fishmonger, I find that a good rule of thumb is to look at the color of the scallops, undipped “dry” scallops will be pink or peach. If your scallops are bright white, hate to break it to you, they’re probably dipped, and in that case just avoid them all together.
But, when you do get good scallops just keep things simple. You don’t need to mess with them. Just some salt and olive oil right before they go on a super hot charcoal grill, a few minutes on each side and then top with a simple chimichurri. Just a ton of olive oil, parsley, lemon and some chives. The charred scallops and the bright, slightly sharp, chimichurri is so good. Think of it like an herby vinaigrette to top your grilled items, or really whatever else you want.
Think of it like an herby vinaigrette to top your grilled items, or really whatever else you want.
- Dry Sea Scallops – 1lb or however many you’re gonna eat
- Sea Salt
- Olive Oil
For the Chimichurri:
- 1/2 C chopped parsley
- 2 tblspn chopped chives
- Zest of 1 lemon
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- Tablespoon chopped capers (make sure to rinse off their brine or salt, depending on how the’re packed)
- 1/4 – 1/2C olive oil, extra virgin, use the good stuff here
- Salt & Pepper
For the Chimmichurri
Chop up all your your ingredients, as finely as you have the patience for, and combine in a bowl with the olive oil, salt, pepper, lemon juice and stir it up. Give it a quick taste for seasoning and adjust as needed. Let it sit for at least 10 minutes so all the flavors combine a bit. You may want to give this a quick taste just before you’re ready to eat, check the salt and acid and adjust if needed.
For the Scallops
Pat them dry with a paper towel, and just before you are ready to grill toss them lightly in a bit of olive oil and some salt. Grill them for about 3 minutes on each side, just until cooked and they have some some good grill marks on them.
When you’re ready to eat just top those scallops with a very generous dousing of the chimmichurri and eat up!