How to cook perfect scallops?
Unfortunately, most of us never did not try such a miracle of cooking, but never even came across them in stores, simply not even knowing what these promising scallops look like.
All those who once rested somewhere on the seashore, especially the Mediterranean, for certain, have often met beautiful bulging shells: many of them make souvenirs and ornaments, and small specimens can even be found somewhere on the shore. What is even more interesting, in the minds of most of the inhabitants of our planet, under the concept of "seashell" and hides the image of this sea scallop, we just did not even suspect it.
In fact, it is an edible and very useful sea mollusk, which over the millennia of its existence has acquired many legends and legends. For example, in ancient mythology, he became the personification of the feminine, water and sexuality, the main feature of the goddess Venus.
By the way, in the 1980s, scallops were on the verge of complete extinction as a result of active reproduction of brown algae.As a result, the population was still able to be preserved, today it is being actively restored, but still it is still very far from the formation of the previous volumes. That is why today, an elite delicacy, scallops, is an expensive pleasure, which is not affordable for everyone.
But many housewives are frightened not only by the high price, but also by the ignorance of how to cook scallops deliciously, so that they turn out exactly as experienced gourmets describe: tender ones with a pleasant sweetness peculiar to these mollusks. In fact, it is not so difficult, the main thing is to adhere to the basic rules.
Naturally, the most delicious are scallops, only recently caught from the bottom of the ocean. For some elite restaurants, such shells are delivered every day by special divers who dive in the open ocean and collect scallops with their hands.
It is believed that collected in this way, the shellfish are the most delicious, because if you collect them with nets, they are under stress and change in taste.
Where to buy and how to choose?
Scallops usually come to supermarkets or other stores from farms where they have learned to grow them in a special way.This process is rather laborious and costly, and therefore the price for them still remains relatively high.
To make your dish really tender and tasty, you need to know how to choose these marine inhabitants. On sale you can meet weighed scallops and closed in vacuum packaging. The latter are much healthier and tastier than those sold by weight, they are subject to shock freezing, as a result of which they retain their useful properties and taste qualities much better.
Frozen weighted scallops will cost you much less than vacuum ones, but their taste will not be so full. Not the whole shell is usually sold, which can reach 15-20 cm in diameter, but only the fillet of the scallop itself, that is, the muscle that connects the two wings of the shell. Very tasty and valuable shellfish roe is usually sold separately.
It is not enough to choose this future delicacy, it also needs to be properly defrosted. For this package with all the contents immersed in cold water for 1 hour.
Sometimes the scallops are thawed faster, in this case, it is very important not to miss the moment when they are ready for further cooking, so as not to spoil their sweetish taste.By the way, in restaurants, such mollusks are thawed in water with milk, so that the result is the most delicate dish.
How to cook?
In fact, despite their external mystery, from scallops you can cook almost anything, you can choose any vending culinary method. So, the scallops are incredibly delicious, if they are served completely raw: for this, they are cut into thin slices, and to emphasize their exquisite taste, the meat can be slightly salted, peppered and poured with olive oil.
Those who are completely raw clams do not inspire confidence, may like marinated scallops - for them it is enough to cook a delicious marinade.
For him you can use a variety of spices: pepper, salt, thyme, basil, rosemary, dill and others, as well as olive oil. The scallops are again cut into thin slices, after which they are soaked for an hour in a marinade. The most common way of making such a mollusk is its roasting.
You can do it as if in a frying pan or on a grill, as you like. In order to grill scallops, it is necessary to pre-lubricate the net with oil, since the mollusks have a habit of strongly adhering to its surface.
Scallops themselves should also be smeared with olive oil so that they do not dry out during frying, but become more juicy. The roasting time is only a few minutes, it can vary from the size of the mollusk itself.
It’s also easy to fry them in a pan: for this you will need a rather large pan so that the scallops can be spread out without touching each other. The mollusk meat must be pre-lubricated with your favorite spices, and then spread onto a hot frying pan, 1.5 minutes on each side.
Finished scallops should cease to be colorless, if their central part is still transparent, the frying process can be extended for another 2 minutes. After that, they can be safely served to the table.
Scallops in other dishes
These useful mollusks are actively used as one of the ingredients to create tasty and interesting dishes, for example, in soups or risotto. It is important to remember that, regardless of the recipe, the scallops become absolutely ready very quickly, which means that they must be added to the common dish no sooner than 3-4 minutes before it is fully cooked.
For example, these mollusks cannot be cooked for a long time, otherwise it is very easy to overdo it with this matter, as a result of which they turn out to be completely “rubber”.Also, they are not recommended to warm up, because they quickly lose their qualities and cease to please with a delicate taste.
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