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Pan-Roasted Sea Scallops with Cucumber Sauce
Kotwal Singh, Regional Executive Chef, Hard Rock Cafe Micronesia

12 large sea scallops
1 large cucumber
1 1/2 shallots, finely chopped
1/3 cup dry white wine (if desired)
1 Tbs chopped fresh dill
1 tsp dry mustard
2 tsps cornstarch
1 cup fish stock (or water)
1 Tbs unsalted butter
1 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
Salt and white pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped chives (for garnish)

Peel the cucumber, cut it in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Using the grater blade in a food processor cut the cucumbers in julienne (matchstick) strips. This can also be done by hand or on a mandoline or grater. Salt the cucumber and let it drain in a bowl or colander for 30 minutes. Rinse well. In a nonstick skillet, boil the cucumber with the shallots and white wine for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the cucumber julienne is limp but not overcooked. Meanwhile, mix the dry mustard and cornstarch with the cold fish stock. Sprinkle the cucumbers with the dill and add the mustard-cornstarch mixture. Boil until it thickens lightly, then stir in the butter. Set the sauce aside while you cook the scallops.

Wipe out the pan and place it over very high heat. Swirl in the olive oil and, when it is very hot, place the sea scallops in a single layer. Let the bottoms of the scallops cook until dark brown, then remove the pan from the heat and let the scallops finish cooking in their own heat, sprinkling them lightly with salt and white pepper. Serve the scallops hot on individual plates. Spoon the warm cucumber sauce around them and sprinkle the whole thing with chopped chives. Serve warm.

Yield: 4 servings

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