Summer is still going strong over here in Greece and while Greek summer is amazing, I don’t feel like being in the kitchen for very long on these scorching hot days. If I’m not eating somewhere outside, I prefer to snack on little dishes that are quick and easy to prepare, perhaps with a cold glass of wine or tsipouro on the side.
Little over half a year ago, I posted an autumnal/winter-y version of a seared scallop with miso butter and little mushrooms. While I could eat that little dish all year round, I do think it’s time for a more summer-y version now.
This time, I’ve paired a delicious seared sea scallop with some refreshing passionfruit, papaya and spicy jalapeño salsa.
Served on the half shell, this summer-y little dish makes for the perfect mini-appetizer to a multi-course meal, or a decadent snack served alongside a fruity cocktail at a summer-y garden party or dinner.
Seared Scallop with Passion Fruit and Papaya Salsa
- 6 small passion fruits (about 150g) or enough to make at least 2 large tablespoons of juice
- 90g ripe papaya
- 1 small fresh jalapeño
- 1 teaspoon lime juice (or more to taste)
- 6 large fresh sea scallops (1 per person), or 18 - 24 small scallops (3 - 4 per person)
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil (any oil with a high smoke point, so not olive oil)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Make passion fruit juice: slice all but one passion fruits in half and use a small spoon to scoop out the pulp. Strain the pulp/juice through a fine sieve to remove the seeds, use the back of a spoon to help the pulp/juice go through the sieve.
- Make the fruit salsa: Very finely dice the papaya and add to a small bowl. Remove the pith and seeds from the jalapeño, mince very finely and add to the bowl as well. Add the lime juice, passionfruit juice and season with salt and pepper according to taste. Stir to combine and set aside.
- Clean the scallops: Open the scallop shells and remove the skirt and dark innards (keep the white meat and leave the corals (orange bit) attached if you like it). Clean and rinse six of the shells (rounded side) to serve the scallop in later.
- Sear the scallops: Pat dry the scallops with some paper towel. Get them as dry as possible. Season with a little salt and pepper on each side. Heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil (not olive oil) in a nonstick frying-pan, or skillet over high heat. When the pan is very hot, add the scallops and sear on each side for 1 – 2 minutes (depending on size).
- Plate: Scoop 1 – 2 teaspoons of the salsa in the rounded part of each shell. Place your seared scallop(s) on top (either 1 per shell, or divide smaller scallops over the 6 cleaned shells). Scoop a tiny bit of the passionfruit pulp from the reserved passion fruit on top. Serve immediately.