Super Fancy, Relatively Easy

I know I am always bragging about Jon’s cooking. I know it is probably getting old. But when I came home a couple of weeks ago to find this meal, even I was astounded. He really outdid himself with this one and it definitely gets an “ah mazing” rating.

Spiced Scallops with Balsamic-Braised Red Cabbage

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 pound red cabbage, cored and thinly sliced
  • 2 Turkish bay leaves or 1 California
  • 3/4 cup water, divided
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 pinches ground cloves
  • 1 1/2 pounds large sea scallops, tough ligament removed from side of each if attached
  • Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add cabbage, bay leaves, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and toss to coat.

    Stir in 1/2 cup water and 2 tablespoon vinegar and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, until cabbage is tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a platter and keep warm, covered.

    Stir together spices, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Pat scallops dry and season both sides with spice mixture.

    Wipe out skillet, then heat remaining tablespoon butter over medium-high heat until foam subsides. Sauté scallops, turning once, until golden brown and just cooked through, about 5 minutes total. Add to cabbage.

    Add remaining 1/4 cup water and tablespoon vinegar to skillet and boil, stirring, until slightly thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Pour over scallops and cabbage.

    Egg Fried Rice

    • 1 tablespoon peanut oil
    • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
    • 4 cups cold unsalted steamed white rice
    • 3/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 cup thinly sliced scallion greens (3 to 4 scallions)
    • 1 to 2 teaspoons Asian sesame oil

    Special equipment: a well-seasoned 14-inch flat-bottomed wok

    Heat wok over high heat until a drop of water vaporizes instantly upon contact. Add peanut oil, swirling to coat wok evenly, and heat until hot and just smoking. Add eggs, tilting wok and swirling eggs to form a thin even layer on cooking surface, and cook 30 seconds, then add rice and salt and stir-fry, breaking up eggs and letting rice rest several seconds between stirs, until rice is hot, 2 to 3 minutes. Add scallion greens and sesame oil (to taste) and stir-fry until combined well.

    **Jon added a bunch of veggies that we had in the fridge, thinly sliced, and added with the scallion greens and sesame oil at the end. He also added fish sauce and oyster sauce to taste.


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