Delicious, easy and good for you!
That title is a mouthful, huh?
Who says eating gluten free or not eating cheese has to be boring? Sometimes you’re just in the mood for a meal that looks a little fancy even if it isn’t. This was delicious and came together really quickly even on a weeknight! I had leftover quinoa in the fridge and scallops take less than 6 minutes to cook in a pan. The worst part is whisking the oil into the mayo (just take a break and stretch your forearm if needed. Just kidding, it’s not that bad). And if you’re grossed out by the idea of eating mayo as a condiment with a meal, well I have news for you, you’ve eaten it before at fancy restaurants – it’s also called aioli or rouille. Using well flavored mayo’s to flavor seafood, soups or other dishes is a much older tradition than using it on sandwiches. So there. I’m going to go enjoy my homemade mayo now that I’ve gotten that off my chest. I think I just made mayo hipster? Is that what just happened there?
This is a great way to use up leftover quinoa and any diced veggies you may have in the fridge. I use mushrooms, celery and onions here but you certain could use other things if you don’t have those. No need to limit yourself! And if you don’t eat seafood or are vegetarian, the quinoa patties each have about 5 g of protein in them so a couple of those and some veggies and you’ll still have a filling meal! These are also good when used as sort of a falafel with some tahini sauce, tomatoes, cucumbers and all that deliciousness.
A note on substitutions: If you have a problem with soy, feel free to leave out the tamari – it just adds a little umami flavor. It won’t be a big deal if you leave it out. Feel free to use other GF flours that you have on hand or if you eat wheat, you can use breadcrumbs.
I think you’ll love this! When you eat like this, you won’t miss heavily processed food, cheese, wheat or anything else. Good stuff!
1 cup dry quinoa, cooked and cooled
6 – 8 oz mushrooms, chopped in small pieces
1 medium onion, diced
3 stalks celery, finely chopped
1 tbsp unsalted pasture butter
1 clove garlic minced
2 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves chopped
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 whole egg or the whites from 2 eggs
2 – 4 tbsp coconut flour
1 tsp low sodium tamari
sea salt and black pepper to taste
1 tbsp unsalted pasture butter
1 tbsp olive or coconut oil
12 sea scallops, trimmed, rinsed and patted dry with paper towels
sea salt and black pepper
Spicy Garlic Mayo
2 egg yolks (from pasture raised organic hens – local is best!)
2 tsp dijon mustard
1 cup olive oil (don’t use Extra Virgin for this)
juice from half a lemon
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp sriracha sauce (I use Ninja Squirrel brand from Whole Foods)
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Make the patties first. Heat a medium sized saute pan over medium heat. When it’s hot, add 1 tbsp butter and saute the celery, mushrooms and onion until the onions are translucent and the mushrooms have browned. Add the garlic, rosemary and oregano and cook for just 30 seconds or so. Turn off the heat and stir into the cooled quinoa. Add the egg whites (I used egg whites only because I used the yolks for the mayo and didn’t want to waste them) tamari, parsley, coconut flour, salt and pepper. Start with 2 tbsps of coconut flour and stir well. Add more coconut flour if the mixture is very moist. Coconut flour will absorb some of the moisture but sometimes too much so! Add a couple tbsp of water if that happens.
Grease a baking sheet with whatever fat you prefer to use and then form the mixture into 10 – 12 patties. They should be a little smaller than the palm of your hand. Place on the baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes, then flip and bake for another 5-7 minutes.
Crispy on the outside, soft on the inside.
While the patties are baking, make the spicy garlic mayo. Put the minced garlic on a firm surface (a cutting board will do) and sprinkle generously with sea salt. The salt will soften the garlic and help it to release juices. Place the egg yolks* and dijon mustard in a medium bowl and whisk until well combined. Continue whisking and slowly drizzle the olive oil down the side of the bowl. The oil and the yolk mixture will start to emulsify. Keep whisking and pour the oil slower than you have to. If you pour too fast, the emulsion will start to break (stop pouring and whisk until it comes back together). As it thickens, the bowl may start to slide around – it might help to rest the bowl on a dish towel. When you finish whisking in the oil, add the garlic with it’s juices and salt, the lemon juice and whisk. When that is well blended, whisk in the sriracha sauce. If you don’t like spicy, you can leave out the sriracha – it’ll still be a delicious garlicky mayo! Add more salt if necessary and set aside while you make the scallops.
Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat. While it is heating, sprinkle your scallops* generously with sea salt and black pepper. When the pan is very hot, add 1/2 tbsp butter and 1/2 tbsp oil to the pan. When the butter is melted, add half the scallops, placing one of their flat round sides face down in the pan. (Unless you have a very large skillet to work with, I recommend only making 6 at a time – otherwise they will release too much liquid and you won’t get a good sear). Cook for 2-3 minutes, flip and cook for another 2-3 minutes. They should have a nice browning on the outside but still be tender on the inside. If they stick to the pan, they probably need another minutes on. Remove from heat before they get tough!
Pan seared scallops are super easy to make and make you look fancy!
Serve a couple of quinoa patties topped with 4 scallops and a big dollop of the garlicky mayo. I happened to serve this with some raw romaine leaves and some sauteed kale & extra mushrooms – but you can serve it with any vegetable you have on hand.
Serve a couple of quinoa patties topped with scallops & spicy garlic mayo on a bed of vegetables. So good!
*This recipe contains raw egg yolk and scallops that are not fully cooked. Consuming raw or undercooked meats, poultry, seafood, shellfish, or eggs may increase your risk of foodborne illness.