Well, this scallop crudo recipe as such an appetizer. Why? Well, first of all, crudo is a dish you never see outside of a restaurant.
Also, it can seem daunting or even scary to make it yourself. But the truth is so long as you get super fresh seafood and keep everything cold and clean you're all set.
This sea scallop crudo is inspired by California as it combines some of our favorite local ingredients -- citrus, avocado, seafood. Also, it's a mix of ingredients you see in cuisines, namely, Japanese, Mexican, and Italian, throughout the Golden State.
This is a dish that's all about balance. The mix of spicy jalapeno, warm ginger, bright citrus, and fruity olive oil are what make it delicious.
We get it --- you love ginger and jalapenos and feel like more is better. But that's not the case with this recipe. Go light on all the ingredients so that the flavor of the seafood really shines through.
Before we dive into this scallop recipe, let's go over a few keys.
First off, what exactly is crudo? The word crudo (pronounced "crew-dough") means raw in Spanish and Italian and refers to a category of raw dishes. Usually crudo is made with some sort of animal protein, say, seafood, fish, or meat.
Crudo is usually raw fish that is thinly sliced and lightly dressed with a combination of olive oil and citrus juice. But there aren't really any hard set rules as to the shape, size, or exact ingredients.
Since the definition is so broad, it's widely accepted that carpaccio -- thinly sliced raw meat -- is a type of crudo.
The easiest way to think about it is that sashimi and ceviche have more culinary rules around how they're made. There are a lot of rules around traditional Japanese sashimi. As in everything from how the fish is killed, how it's sliced, and how it's served is carefully dictated.
Ceviche is like crudo with way more citrus juice and that extra acid essentially "cooks" the protein. Okay, if you define cooking as the "application of heat to an ingredient" then ceviche is not technically cooked. But people say that ceviches is cooked because the fish sits in the citrus juice for quite a while. That time in the acidic juice alters the texture similar to the way cooking (applying heat) does.
Making crudo at home is really fast and easy which is why it's a pretty perfect appetizer to serve for company. However, there are a few crucial tips you'll want to follow so that it's healthy and delicious.
We made this recipe for the "What Grows Together Goes Together" Instagram Live series on California Grown with SommVivant Amanda McCrossin. She paired this dish with a bright, traditionally made California sparkling wine: 2013 Caraccioli Brut Cuvee.
Heads up that Aida made this recipe on her IGTV so head there to check it out!
halved and pit removed
or serrano chile, stemmed, halved, seeded, and minced, divided
plus more for garnish
sliced paper thin
Make the avocado smash: Mash the avocado with garlic, half of the jalapeno, and 1 tablespoon of the lime juice in a small bowl until mixture is mostly smooth; season with salt.
Prepare the crudo: Using a very sharp knife, sliced each scallop into 2 to 3 coins (use a sharp blade and aim for one long, clean stroke).
Combine the olive oil, ginger, orange and lime juice, and remaining jalapeno in a medium bowl. Add the scallops and gently toss to combine.
To serve, spread the avocado mixture on serving plates. Scatter the prepared scallop crudo on top then add a pinch of flaky salt, some radish, a few cilantro leaves, and a final drizzle of olive oil. Serve immediately.
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