My latest smoking project was sea scallops. They are so easy, I've smoked them twice in the last month. Just brine them for an hour or two and smoke for about 25 to 30 minutes. That's it. I like to leave them in the fridge to dry out after the brining step, but you could essentially skip this and they will still be fine. Just pat them dry before putting them into the smoker.
The recipe I used came from Coastal Living (via MyRecipes), but the permalink doesn't seem to work. (So much for being lazy and just linking.) The original recipe calls for 36 sea scallops, which is overkill for a family of three. I usually only buy about 2 to 3 medium-large scallops for each person, so the amounts listed below are 1/6 the original. Scale up accordingly for your needs. Also, the first time I did this preparation, I felt the brine could have been a little more concentrated, so I increased the salt and sugar a little. In fact, I think they could tolerate still more. The alternative is to brine the scallops a little longer, say for two hours.
- 6 large sea scallops
- 1/2 oz (14 g) kosher salt
- 1/3 oz (10g) sugar
- 1 cup (237 ml) water
You can probably think of tons of ways to use smoked scallops. Served with a fancy salad of baby lettuce? In sushi? Pasta with a splash of cream? I decided to use them in risotto along with smoked salmon. Good call, if I do say so myself.
Seafood risotto featuring home-smoked scallops and salmon
Adapted from Emeril's seafood risotto recipe
Serves 4 to 6
- 1 shallot finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 6 cups (1.4 l) fish stock or vegetable stock
- juice from one lemon (or to taste)
- 1 pound (450 g) Arborio rice
- 4 to 6 large, smoked scallops, chopped into 4 pieces each
- smoked salmon (as much as you'd like), crumbled into large pieces
- 2/3 cups sweet peas (fresh or frozen)
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) cream (optional)
- 2 to 3 oz (60 to 85 g) grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 to 2 tbs butter
- chopped chives, for garnish
- salt and freshly ground white pepper, to taste
If you have leftover risotto, you can also try making these wonderful crispy risotto cakes. Or how about these fried rice balls?