Roasted Hatch Chile Seared Scallops burst with delicious fresh, seasonal flavors. The subtle sweetness of the scallops perfectly balances the heat from the peppers. And it’s a gorgeous healthy dish!
There’s nothing quite like the taste of a perfectly seared scallop. When done properly, it takes just a couple of minutes and will melt in your mouth.
And when you add the sweet and spicy Hatch Chile Butter to them, watch out!
Roasted Hatch Chile Seared Scallops are a crowd pleaser that you will want to make again and again!
How to Sear Scallops
The first thing to do is remove the side-muscle from the scallop if it’s still attached. It’s usually orange-ish or can just be more opaque than the rest of the flesh (see above image). Its texture is tougher than the rest of the scallop. Pinch it between your thumb and first-finger, and gently pull it off.
Season both sides of the scallops with salt and pepper.
Lightly coat the bottom of a sauté pan with oil or butter. When the pan is very hot (the fat should be bubbling), add the scallops. You should hear a sizzle when the scallops hit the pan — if you don’t, wait! This is the key to the perfect sear.
Sear the scallops until they are golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes per side. They should be just beginning to crack and still be slightly translucent in the center.
- Remove them from the pan and serve immediately.
You can follow the above instructions for searing scallops with most scallop recipes.
When to Serve Them
- Roasted Hatch Chile Seared Scallops are a fantastic first course or appetizer.
- They also make for a lovely main course. Just add a side salad and maybe a rustic bread.
- For an hors d’oeuvre, you can skip the cilantro and place the scallops on tortilla chips with the salsa on top.
- Sometimes I skip the salsa and add the scallops to pasta with a little bit more of the Hatch Chile Butter.
Recipe Tips and Substitutions
- When searing scallops (as mentioned above), the pan must be super hot before you add them. If you don’t hear that sizzling sound when they hit the pan, WAIT. Otherwise, you won’t get the beautiful golden “crust.”
- Scallops can go from perfectly tender and buttery to too tough in a matter of seconds. Remove them from the pan as soon as they’re golden and you see the cracking on top.
- Not a cilantro fan? Skip it. You can use any fresh herbs you like to garnish the plate, or none at all.
- These Hatch Chile Scallops are best right out of the pan!
I hope you love Roasted Hatch Chile Seared Scallops as much as I do!
More Hatch Chile and scallop recipes:
And here are a dozen more of my favorite Hatch recipes.
Roasted Hatch Chile Seared Scallops
- 1 small bunch fresh cilantro, washed and dried
- 6 Sea scallops (these are the larger scallops)
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped washed and dried tomatoes, seeds removed
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped avocado (Click here for How to Cut and Peel and Avocado)
- 2 tablespoons roasted, finely chopped Hatch Chiles (Click here for How to Roast and Peel a Pepper)
- 1 tablespoon, plus 2 teaspoons Hatch Chile Butter (Click here for recipe), divided
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Prepare serving plates. Add a layer of cilantro leaves to two serving plates and set aside.
- Make the topping. In a small bowl, combine the tomato, avocado and roasted Hatch chiles, and set aside.
- Prepare the scallops. Remove the muscle from each scallop (if it hasn't already been removed). You'll recognize the muscle as a thicker portion of the flesh, running up the side of the scallop. It is slightly opaque compared to the rest of the scallop and the texture is firm. (This muscle is unpleasant to eat, and it should always be removed before cooking.) Grab the tab of the muscle firmly, and then gently pull it off the scallop.
- Sear the scallops. Add 1 tablespoon of the Hatch Chile Compound Butter to a large sauté pan and place it over high heat. Season both sides of the scallops with salt and pepper. When the pan is very hot (the butter should be bubbling), add the scallops. You should hear a sizzle when the scallops hit the pan -- if you don't, wait! Sear the scallops until they are golden brown, about 2 minutes per each side. When you flip them, add a touch more of the remaining butter on top of each one. They should be just beginning to crack and still be slightly translucent in the center.
- Plate and serve. Immediately place 3 scallops on each of the cilantro-garnished serving plates, and then "sprinkle" the tomato-avocado-roasted Hatch mixture over them.