With the red peppers‘ character leaning towards sweetness and the sausage’s wild temper towards paprika, the fleshy scallops with chorizo is the dish that will indeed train your libido for the dynamo-meter. The juicy introduction begins gently with the predominant ‘sweet’ sense in taste when you bite the luscious scallop; and suddenly the provocative sausage, with the boldness of the bullfighter comes to incite the palate, throwing its smoked banderillas and altering the tensions. A tasty volapié or recibiendo? It’s up to you to decide which attack position you will enjoy.
Scallops and Spanish Chorizo: Two contrasting ingredients
In the gifted scallops that gastronomy appreciates in many ways, we have previously dedicated the “scallops in love: with ginger and orange accompanied with avocado“ post.
Spanish chorizo is the pork sausage, smoked or not, also flavoured with peppers, prepared in various types depending on local recipes. It is, however, always red when heated, and gives out shining juices and spicy or sweet and spicy aromas of paprika, garlic and herbs.
Fresh chorizo is intended for cooking and it’s usually smaller, soft and less spicy. The processed one is harder, longer and/or thicker – yes, we’re still talking about sausages, don’t be naughty 😛 . It can be eaten even raw in relatively thin slices and it is para tapear, so it can be used in tapas, small portions of bigger dishes or even on bread.
However, there is a great variety of both sizes and flavours. Thus, it’s better to ask about the kind of chorizo that each market offers. You will find plenty (in supermarkets and deli).
In the recipe, we used smoked spicy chorizo from sliced pork. It had very few fat, and it could be eaten even uncooked (as it was already processed). The fact that it was long and thin created a portion of 3:1 (chorizo to scallops). However, you can use a thicker sausage and change the portion to 1:1, which I believe is better.
An easy but quite unique recipe, that looks very impressive and “exotic” when served in shells while maintaining its familiar tones to the Mediterranean palette. The tasteful “reversal” that reserves is even more pleasant.
Scallops with Chorizo and Red Peppers
Preparation: 25-30 minutes. If you don’t find chorizo, you can use another quite spicy sausage so the dish becomes similar in taste, although it won’t be the same. Quick and easy recipe.
Ingredients (serves 2)
6-8 scallops (depending on size) fresh or frozen (if frozen, preferably dry-packed and defrosted)
2 medium red bell peppers
2-3 small, finely chopped onions
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp cognac or brandy
80-100g chorizo sausage in thin slices of approx. 2-4 mm
salt, freshly grated pepper
finely chopped parsley for the serving
Prepare the grill at 210-220 C.
To prepare the bell peppers: Put them whole in a baking tray covered with greaseproof paper or silver foil and place them in the oven grill. Bake for approx. 15-20 minutes, turning each side of them every 5 minutes, until the skin closer to grill starts to become brown.
Remove and close them in the silver foil or a plastic bag. Leave them to sweat for a while. Remove the skin under cool water (to avoid burning your fingers), clean the seeds and cut along in strips of 1x 6-7 cm. or as long as their length is.
To prepare the scallops with chorizo: In a large pan and medium heat, put the chorizo sausage slices and cook each side for approx. 1-1.5 minutes (or even for 2 minutes, depending on the chorizo type), turning them over 1-2 times. They should get a nice color without drying. Remove in a bowl with a slotted spatula and keep some of their fat.
In the same pan (medium to high heat), add the scallops which you have slightly salted. Sear for 1-1,5 minutes per side (depending on size), until just coloured nicely and cooked – the exterior should be crunchy while the fleshy interior should remain juicy. Make sure not to overcook them, if they will get dry out, their texture will end up chewy.
Half a minute before you take them out, pour the cognac and stir. Transfer into a bowl and keep warm.
Note: The meaty muscles of the large scallops of the photo have a diameter of about 5 cm. and a shell. You can remove by cutting parallel to the shell, and discard the stomach sack and the little piece around the muscle and the coral that sometimes keeps sand. Rinse thoroughly under cold water. Smaller scallops are approx. 2.5 cm. Adjust the time according to the size you will use, keeping in mind the max. 1.5′ per side.
In the same pan add 1 tablespoon olive oil. Once it is hot (medium heat) put the onion and sauté for 2 minutes, stirring until softened and cooked (without changing colour).
Add the peppers, salt and pepper and cook for another 2 minutes, stirring. Remove from fire.
To serve: In warm plates (depending on the season), put the peppers along the ¼ of the plate and towards them spread the scallops with chorizo slices. Add parsley and some drops of raw extra virgin olive oil.