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Old 23.09.2011, 10:17
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Frozen sea Scallops

Hope some of you nice people can help me out.
I have some frozen sea scallops and want to make a starter with them this evening. I will cook them in butter and lemon on a flat skillet for around 90 seconds each side (till they take a slight golden brown colour). Then plan to serve with grated ginger, spring onion and a light soy sauce. Question is do I defrost or not? If i do defrost whats the best method? There are conflicting reports via google so any advice from the EF would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 23.09.2011, 10:20
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Re: Frozen sea Scallops

Yes you need to start defrosting them straight away. Later, just before frying, dry them and dust them in flour.
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Old 23.09.2011, 10:28
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Re: Frozen sea Scallops

I disagree with Ittigen I'm afraid.

The professional chefs will still be in bed so in their absence, an enthusiastic amateur will tell you that it will be VERY difficult to get the dish I think you want to get with frozen scallops. When you defrost them, they will go mushy....and when you fry them, the water that has come out of the cells which have ruptured during the freezing process will steam and cause the scallops to be tough and rubbery. They will not fry "cleanly", they will steam

I'd suggest you try to make something else with them which needs a sauce and cook them from frozen in that instead
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Old 23.09.2011, 10:28
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Re: Frozen sea Scallops

If they're in a sealed bag, put them into a bath of cold water. This will speed up the defrost without pre-cooking them or giving them that 'orrible microwaved taste
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Old 23.09.2011, 10:33
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Re: Frozen sea Scallops

Unfortunately, the correct answer is put them in the fridge the night before to defrost slowly.

Since you're not able to do that - agree with the previous poster: defrost in cold water (don't use warm) and keep the scallops sealed from the water.

Hope they turn out nicely. The dish sounds great. Enjoy!
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Old 23.09.2011, 10:40
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Re: Frozen sea Scallops

I agree with all of you, but he can't turn the clock back.

Maybe put these back in the freezer and go and buy some fresh scallops for tonight, in the shells, don't buy them already opened, laying in a bucket of water!

You also need to get the frying pan very, very hot!

Last edited by Ittigen; 23.09.2011 at 11:02.
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Old 23.09.2011, 10:56
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Re: Frozen sea Scallops

Thanks to everyone for the speedy responses. Some great tips there. I will let you know how it goes........if I am still here
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Old 23.09.2011, 10:59
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Re: Frozen sea Scallops

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I'd suggest you try to make something else with them which needs a sauce and cook them from frozen in that instead
Geeeeeeeennnnnaaaaauuuu!!!!!! My thought exactly!

Trying to sear scallops that have been frozen - no matter how long or carefully you defrost them - is pretty much guaranteed to result in failure (their internal structure usually gets pretty much hosed by the freezing process). Sorry.

I'd go for something like poaching them in butter and lemon jiuce, without defrosting beforehand i.e. cook them direct from frozen.



D@mn, I'm hungry now
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Old 23.09.2011, 11:12
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Re: Frozen sea Scallops

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Trying to sear scallops that have been frozen - no matter how long or carefully you defrost them - is pretty much guaranteed to result in failure (their internal structure usually gets pretty much hosed by the freezing process). Sorry.
I'm no expert, but I would have thought in Switzerland that most Scallops you find will have been frozen at some point for transport anyway, even if they're thawed when you buy them.

Anyone know any better? Or - even better - can recommend their best source for Scallops (I'm in Zürich, but I guess I can't be selfish and limit it )
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Old 23.09.2011, 11:25
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Re: Frozen sea Scallops

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I disagree with Ittigen I'm afraid.

The professional chefs will still be in bed so in their absence, an enthusiastic amateur will tell you that it will be VERY difficult to get the dish I think you want to get with frozen scallops. When you defrost them, they will go mushy....and when you fry them, the water that has come out of the cells which have ruptured during the freezing process will steam and cause the scallops to be tough and rubbery. They will not fry "cleanly", they will steam

I'd suggest you try to make something else with them which needs a sauce and cook them from frozen in that instead
Actually, for once (or maybe twice), I agree with Ittigen!

I take them out at noon, and by evening they are defrosted. They do NOT go mushy, and they DO fry cleanly, I use them often.

Now, frozen porcini on the other hand, are best cooked frozen, as otherwise they become mushy and rubbery.

Tom
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Old 23.09.2011, 11:40
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Re: Frozen sea Scallops

Depending on the fish (no idea which fish scallop it is...), soft white fishes (deep water fishes, for example) I usually let defrost inside the fridge in milk. It helps keep a soft texture, and goes very well together with the cooking with butter.


EDIT: Never mind, Portuguese false friend... "Escalope" in portuguese is something completly diferent from Scallop. I'll leave the tip for deep water fish anyway.
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Old 23.09.2011, 11:43
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Re: Frozen sea Scallops

thaw them in cold water, then skewer them, brush with olive oil and garlic and sear them on the BBQ for 30 seconds a side. Squeeze lemon, add salt and pepper. Done. Add to pasta sauce or salad.
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Old 23.09.2011, 12:29
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Re: Frozen sea Scallops

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Geeeeeeeennnnnaaaaauuuu!!!!!! My thought exactly!

Trying to sear scallops that have been frozen - no matter how long or carefully you defrost them - is pretty much guaranteed to result in failure (their internal structure usually gets pretty much hosed by the freezing process). Sorry.
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Actually, for once (or maybe twice), I agree with Ittigen!

I take them out at noon, and by evening they are defrosted. They do NOT go mushy, and they DO fry cleanly, I use them often.
Pearls before swine, WJ, pearls before swine

(see what I did there....that was my little shellfish joke!)
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