Crunchy Garlic Baked Shrimp and Roasted Bellas

Looking for something fast and easy for dinner? Today I bring you Crunchy Garlic Baked Shrimp and Roasted Bellas. Both are quick prep and cook time, and delicious! 🙂

Crunchy Garlic Baked Shrimp

Crunchy Garlic Baked Shrimp

1 lb. large raw shrimp, deveined and peeled
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp. white wine or Tequila
Juice of one lime
Freshly ground sea salt and pepper
4 Tablespoons melted unsalted butter
1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
2 Tbsp. fresh cilantro, chopped

Preheat oven to 425 deg. Fahrenheit.

Combine the shrimp, garlic, lime juice and white wine (or tequila) in a bowl. Stir to combine, and pour into an ungreased baking dish. Spread the shrimp out evenly, and then season with salt and pepper.

Melt the butter in a separate bowl, and mix in the Panko and cilantro until well combined. Sprinkle the mixture evenly over the shrimp in the baking dish.

Bake until the shrimp are pink and opaque, about 15-18 minutes, depending on the size of the shrimp. Check them at 13 minutes to make sure they aren’t overcooking.

Baby Bellas

This makes some mighty tasty, slightly spicy mushrooms. You can grill or roast these in the oven. Harissa is a hot chili sauce, the main ingredients typically being piri piri, serrano peppers and other hot chili peppers, spices and herbs. If you can’t find Harissa, you can substitute Asian chili sauce.

Roasted Bellas

1 Tablespoon harissa
1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Juice of ½ lemon
1 teaspoon dried oregano
8 ounces baby Portobello or cremini mushrooms, cleaned and halved lengthwise

Whisk the harissa, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice and oregano together in a medium bowl. Add the mushrooms and toss well to coat. Marinate for 30 minutes, stirring periodically.

Preheat the oven to 350 deg. Fahrenheit, or preheat the grill if grilling.

Skewer the mushrooms on pre-soaked bamboo skewers. Roast them in the oven for 10-12 minutes, or grill 5 minutes per side.

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Seared Sea Scallops with Roasted Asparagus

Today I bought some dry pack Diver Sea Scallops at Clean Catch. These scallops are hand-harvested by divers on the ocean floor and tend to be less gritty than typical market scallops, which are harvested using a dredge or bottom trawl. Diver scallops are also more ecologically friendly, as the divers do not cause damage to the ocean floor in the harvesting process. They are faster to market than dredge-harvested scallops, which results in much fresher scallops.

Sea Scallops

When buying large sea scallops you should always buy ‘dry packed’ instead of ‘wet packed’ whenever possible. Dry packed scallops do not have any additives; wet packed scallops have sodium tripolyphosphate (STPP) added to extend their shelf life and increase their weight. This causes the scallop to absorb moisture prior to freezing. When you cook wet packed scallops, the STPP will be released and they will simmer in chemical water instead of searing.

Ask your fish-counter person if they are dry or wet packed. If they don’t know, you can usually tell by the look of the scallop. Dry packed scallops are natural beige or pink hues, while wet packed scallops are plump, bright white and often appear in a milky blob. If you must buy wet packed, make sure to thoroughly rinse and drain them prior to cooking.

Let’s cook!

Seared Sea Scallops

Scallops must be seared quickly in a very hot pan to avoid overcooking. Searing creates a lovely crust on the outside before the inside toughens. Don’t be concerned about undercooking the inside. Scallops are very delicate, and the high heat of searing will cook them.

1 lb Diver Sea Scallops

Canola Oil

Freshly ground Sea Salt

Heat a steel or iron pan over high heat for a couple of minutes. Add a thin layer of canola, or other heat-resistant, oil to the pan. Season the scallops lightly with sea salt. Add the scallops to the pan carefully, you should hear them sizzling or your oil is not hot enough. Do not crowd the scallops, they should be about an inch apart; cook them in batches if necessary.

Don’t touch the scallops for a minute and a half to two minutes, depending on the size of the scallops. The scallops are forming their wonderful crust from the sugars in the scallop browning from the high heat. After the time is up, use tongs to have a look at the first scallop. If it has a nice brown crust, turn your scallops over. If not, check them again in 30 seconds. Cook them for the same amount of time on the other side, and plate them with the asparagus and lemon wedges. Serve immediately.

Seared Sea Scallops with Roasted Asparagus

Roasted Asparagus

I love asparagus. It is my favorite vegetable by far. I like it prepared simply, and usually roast is in the oven. I also prefer the thicker stalks to skinny ones; thicker stalks have more flavor and do not have a slightly bitter taste that smaller ones can sometimes have. This recipe is quick, easy, and works well with a time-sensitive main like seared scallops.

1 bunch Asparagus

Olive Oil

Freshly ground Sea Salt and Pepper

Heat your oven to 400 deg. Fahrenheit. Prepare your asparagus by rinsing it and breaking off the ends. Hold onto the very bottom of the stalk and snap the stalk; it will break where it needs to.

Put the asparagus on a metal pan, and pour about a 1/8-1/4 cup of olive oil over it. Grind the pepper and salt liberally. Toss the stalks so that all are coated.

Roast in the oven for 10 minutes, depending on the size of the stalks. If they are skinny stalks, check them at 6 minutes. Serve with lemon wedges.

Fresh Asparagus