“The way to a man’s heart is trough his stomach.”
The lime coconut scallops make a fine starter for your dinner date night. Simple yet taste-dominant ingredients like lime juice, balsamic reduction, and cayenne pepper tamed by creamy coconut flavor form an appetizing small plate dinner course. While the meal is quite easy to prepare, you can count on scoring the “Wow. You’re a great cook!” type of compliment.
In Jiggers n’ Drams’ kitchen, we had a clear vision of what we wanted to achieve. A small plate starter with a crunchy finish following a soft bite and a light tropical punch. When it comes to exotic ingredients, lime and coconut are the staples. So we decided to use them as a base for the sauce. Challenge consisted of finding the right taste enhancers. After plenty of tries, adding balsamic reduction or glaze changed this meal to a different experience.
At last, we had to consider what kind of protein complemented the dominant flavors. Buttery scallops offered the softness that tied all the ingredients together.
Lime Coconut Scallops
- Medium saucepan
- Frying pan
Coconut lime sauce
- 1 13.5 fl oz canned coconut milk, unsweetened
- 1 tbsp lime juice
- 1 tsp of lime sea salt
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter
- 6 wild-caught sea scallops
- a pinch of salt & black pepper, to taste
- cream of coconut, the amount depends on the size of the plate
- balsamic reduction, the amount depends on the size of the plate
- 4 wide outer leaves of romaine lettuce
- 4 lime wheels
- 3 tbsp pecans, halves
- Starting with the plate decoration is essential. Grab two small plates and create circles with the balsamic glaze and the Creme of Coconut. Then, with a toothpick, draw lines into circles.
- Cut romaine lettuce leaves in half. Keep the wide upper halves. Place two lettuce halves on the first half of the plate, and top them with two lime wheels.
- In a pan, lightly saute the pecan halves to release the flavor, chop them roughly, and set them aside.
- In a saucepan, heat the unsweetened coconut milk.
- Add one tablespoon of lime juice and one teaspoon of lime sea salt.
- Add ¼ of a teaspoon of cayenne pepper and stir. Cook for ten minutes, stirring occasionally.
- First, season the scallops with salt and pepper. Heat the pan to medium-high temperature. Melt the unsalted butter, and place scallops on the pan. Flip them when brown from the bottom, about four minutes on each side. Move the scallops from the pan onto the center of the plate, drizzle with the coconut lime sauce, and decorate with chopped pecans.