Monday, August 1, 2011

Egged Lettuce and Scallops

One of the best things about getting married is barrage of wedding gifts.  I always thought that I could care less about what kind of plates we had or silverware we used but I soon learned that this was far more involved than just picking out a china pattern.  When MBH handed me the scanning gun at the department store, she was giving me far more power than she realized.  One of the areas I got a little scan happy was the cast iron section.  I have been wanting a skillet and dutch oven for quite a while and we recently received both (thanks!).  I decided to season the skillet using vegetable oil in the oven for an hour.  I wanted to christen the skillet with something new and delicious so, with some urging from MBH, I grabbed some scallops and heads of romaine from BHFM.

MBH seasoned the scallops with some salt and pepper and olive oil.  She also cut two hearts of romaine in half and added some Parmesan cheese and Greek dressing to the lettuce.  MBH also cut a cucumber in half and sliced an onion for me (she's the best!).

To be honest, I could eat it just like this and would never think about grilling lettuce.  I had recently read about grilling romaine and people raved about it so I wanted to see what it was all about.

I set the grill up for direct cooking at 400º and placed the skillet on the grate with some olive oil and threw in the onions and garlic. When the onions were near done I threw in the scallops.  I let them cook for 8 minutes on each side before taking them off.  I left the cucumber on for the same amount of time and flipped them half way through.  After the scallops were done I put the lettuce on the grate and cooked it for 3 minutes on each side.

This was a late dinner so it was dark out when I started cooking.

Luckily I have a sweet grill light that allows me to see what I am doing.

Sweaty cucumber.

Lettuce on, let the experiment begin.

The lettuce and cucumber were cut up and used as the base for a salad MBH prepped adding some alvacado and feta.  The scallops and onions were added to the top of the salad.  MBH toasted some pitas and prepped some tzatziki style sauce for the pitas on the side.  The salad was awesome and the scallops were great! The lettuce had a great smoke flavor and did not wilt as I was expecting.  MBH and I agreed it is worth trying again.

First round of food done.

Pulled the lettuce next, it had great grill marks.

The scallops were very juicy and tender.  They had a slight smoke flavor that went really well with the grilled lettuce.

Plated. Very good and healthy dinner.

Bonus Salsa Cooks:
I recently cooked salsa twice using two different methods.  My salsa has been quite spicy my last few attempts but I have been trying to keep the flavor with less spice.  The first time I used the typical veggies I have used in the past only this time de-seeding one of the jalapenos.  This was still fairly spicy so on the second attempt I replaced one of the sorranos with a pablano and soaked the de-seeded jalapenos and serranos in ice water to eliminate the heat.  (After some research I discovered that serranos are actually higher on the scoville scale than jalapenos.  I think the sorranos were the main culprit in my fire in the hole salsa.) The second batch was much less spicy (almost no heat) than the first although both tasted great.  I ate at least half of the second batch so I would say it was the winner.  I will continue to perfect this.

First batch.

Plated (or bowled I guess).

The second batch.  I didn't catch a finished pic but you can see the poblano in the center which made the
salsa slightly greener in color than past attempts.