Patting the scallops dry ensures they develop a nice crust as they sear in the pan. It's important not to move them around in the pan other than to turn them over.
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon water
1 pound large sea scallops
1/4 teaspoon salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1/3 cup mirin (sweet rice wine)
1/4 teaspoon grated orange rind
1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
1/4 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon dark sesame oil
1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted
How to Make It
Combine cornstarch and 1 teaspoon water; set aside.
Pat scallops dry with paper towels. Sprinkle scallops evenly with 1/8 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.
Heat peanut oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add scallops to pan; cook 2 minutes on each side or until done. Transfer scallops to a platter. Add garlic to pan; sauté 30 seconds. Add remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt, remaining 1/8 teaspoon pepper, mirin, and next 6 ingredients (through sesame oil). Stir in cornstarch mixture; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute or until sauce thickens, stirring constantly. Pour sauce over scallops; sprinkle with sesame seeds.
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I made a few changes (rather than go shopping in a blizzard):
2 tsp sugar plus 1/4 C dry sherry in place of the mirin;
dried lemon peel rather than fresh
skipped the orange peel
used packaged instead of fresh juices.
I made 1/2 the scallops but the full amount of sauce because I was serving over rice. Pretty good, and I'm keeping the recipe to do again. Easy and quick.