A Dish When There’s No Time

Scallops with a creamy, spicy sauce.

Roasting often conjures up images of low, slow cooking in the oven for hours on end.

But this particular recipe for roasting is quick, quick, quick.

“Quick-Roasted Scallops with Sriracha and Lime” is for times when you want dinner on the table fast, fast, fast. It’s from “All About Roasting” (W.W. Norton & Company) by award-winning cookbook author Molly Stevens.

The book, of which I received a review copy, is full of recipes sure to keep your oven busy. Large scallops get baked, then quickly broiled with a simple topping of mayo, lime juice, sugar and Sriracha. They remind me of the baked or broiled mayo-topped scallops at Japanese restaurants.

They’re perfect with some steamed rice and some green veggies such as asparagus or bok choy.

No doubt, we all have a bottle of Sriracha handy in the fridge, too. For a change of pace from the ubiquitous Rooster brand, try the Shark brand instead. My friend, cookbook author Andrea Nguyen, turned me on to this variety, which I purchased from Lion Supermarket. It’s made in Thailand with no preservatives. It’s not a blast of heat like the Rooster brand, but more rounded with a good balance of heat, sweet and tang. For more tasting notes on other Sriracha sauces, check out Andrea’s post on her Viet World Kitchen blog.

Since you’re only using a teaspoon of Sriracha in this dish, the heat is pretty mild. If you like more of a kick, feel free to add more.

Now, get that broiler going to get dinner swift, swift, swift.

Quick-Roasted Scallops with Sriracha and Lime

(Serves 4)

Butter, for the pan

1 1/2 pounds large dry scallops (no water added)

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1 teaspoon Sriracha or to taste

1 teaspoon fresh lime juice

1/4 teaspoon sugar

Heat the oven: Position a rack about 6 inches away from the broiler element of the oven and heat to 500 degrees (475 degrees convection). Line a heavy-duty rimed baking sheet with foil and lightly butter the foil (otherwise the sauce can make the scallops stick).

Prepare the scallops: Most sea scallops have a small, opaque, tough muscle on one side that attaches the scallop to the shell and while not inedible, it is rubbery and best peeled off and discarded. As you handle the scallops, check for sand. If they feel at all gritty, rinse them quickly under cold water and pat dry. Do not submerge the scallops, as they like to soak up water and consequently won’t roast as well.

Make the coating: In a small bowl, stir together mayonnaise, Sriracha, lime juice, and sugar. Put scallops in a large bowl, add 1 tablespoon of the sauce, and toss gently with a rubber spatula to coat. Reserve the remaining sauce.

Roast the scallops: Arrange scallops on the baking sheet with at least an inch between them. Roast for 5 minutes. Remove pan from oven and heat the broiler on high. Flip scallops one by one (tongs work well for this) and dollop a small spoonful of the remaining sauce on each scallop. Return scallops to the oven and broil until tops are beginning to brown in spots and the scallops are just cooked through, another 2 to 3 minutes (the timing depends on their size). If you’re uncertain about doneness, nick a scallop with a sharp knife and peek to see. It should be mostly opaque, with a trace of translucence at the center. Serve immediately.

From “All About Roasting” by Molly Stevens

Another Molly Stevens Recipe: Roasted Endive with Sherry Vinegar

Another Scallop Recipe: Ad Hoc’s Caramelized Sea Scallops

And: Dorie Greenspan’s Scallops with Caramel-Orange Sauce

And: Melissa Clark’s Scallops with Tomatoes and Preserved Lemon

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