Seared scallops with garlic butter soy sauce, paired with a summery white wine, is a wonderfully versatile seafood dish that highlights a simple summer BBQ or an elegant dinner party.
Seared Scallops are easy and quick to prepare and they look beautiful when you present them delicately on a plate. These elegant Pan Seared Scallops with Garlic Butter Soy Sauce can be an appetizer, main dish, or one of your side dishes. Paired with a fun white wine, you have a match made in heaven. Read on below to find suggested rose and white wines to serve with pan seared scallops.
Three Delicious Japanese Sauces for Seared Scallops
1. Garlic Butter Soy Sauce: It’s a garlic butter sauce with a Japanese twist by adding in soy sauce. Combining butter and soy sauce is always a popular combination in Japan, so I hope you give it a try with these seared scallops.
2. Spicy Mayo Sauce: Japanese love seafood with mayo! For this sauce, I spiced up the mayo to add some kick. Spicy mayo is very easy to make, just add Sriracha sauce to mayonnaise – find my recipe here.
3. Unagi sauce: This thick soy sauce is my children’s favorite because it’s sweet. I used a bottled unagi sauce this time (as you only need a few dollops), but you can make homemade unagi sauce using my recipe here. The sweetness of the sauce adds a nice touch to seared scallops.
There are so many options with seared scallops from the cooking method, to the scallop sauce, to the wine served alongside this wonderful seafood dish. My seared scallop recipe is very detailed, including instructions to
Seared Scallops with Wine
During the warm months, we enjoy drinking rose and fun white wines in the afternoon while watching the kids play in the backyard. Tower 15’s Sauvignon Blanc and Rose are perfect for these relaxing occasions.
The Sauvignon Blanc is Tower 15’s first release and it is simply fabulous! The texture is very creamy and easy on the palate. It’s is a very fruity wine, reminding me of fresh peach juice with a hint of tartness and spice. We have paired this wine with three styles of seared scallops and they all worked very well together. Beside the Sauvignon Blanc, we shared the “Sunset Rose” a few days ago with a group of friends at a Chinese restaurant and everyone enjoyed it. The crisp chilled Rose filled with summer fruit flavors complemented the salty Chinese food. If you are looking to bring a fun bottle of wine to a party in the summer, I would recommend the Rose for an afternoon BBQ and the Sauvignon Blanc for a sit down dinner in the backyard.
Please note: We received no compensation for this review. We received Tower 15’s 2012 Sauvignon Blanc and Sunset Rose from Jarvis Communications free of charge to use in exchange for an honest review.
- 1 lb sea scallops (I used graded U8 scallops; U8 means there are 8 of this size scallops in a pound)
- kosher salt (Diamond Crystal; use half for table salt)
- freshly ground black pepper
- 3 Tbsp clarified butter
- ¼ cup yuzu-flavored tobiko (flying fish roe) (for garnish; regular tobiko can be found in aJapanese grocery store)
- chives (or parsley, I used Japanese herb kinome, young leaf of prickly ash)
For Brining (Optional)
- ¼ cup kosher salt (Diamond Crystal; use half for table salt)
- ½ cup water (boiling)
- 2 cups water (cold)
- 1-1 ½ Tbsp salted butter
- 1 clove garlic (2 tsp, minced)
- ¼ cup dry white wine (such as Sauvignon Blanc)
- 1 tsp soy sauce
Before You Start
- Make clarified butter (see my tutorial). Clarified butter does not burn as easily as regular butter so it’s the best choice for searing scallops beautifully.
To Brine Scallops
- The reason why we brine scallops is for adding a flavor and removing the chemical taste. Combine the salt with the boiling water in a large bowl, stirring to dissolve the salt. Then add cold water.
- Add the scallops to the brine and let stand for 10 minutes (no longer, or the scallops become too salty). Drain the scallops.
- Rinse under cold water and gently pat dry with the paper towels. Sprinkle the scallops lightly with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
To Sear Scallops
- Heat the clarified butter in a large stainless steel frying pan over medium-high heat until it begins to smoke. You can create a more beautiful caramelized exterior using stainless steel pan than a non-stick pan. If you use regular butter (instead of the clarified butter), melt the butter over medium heat. Add the scallops in a single layer, leaving enough space between each scallop (If necessary, cook in 2 pans or in 2 batches). To prevent oil splatter, you can use this oil splatter guard.
- Cook without moving the scallops, until the bottoms are nicely browned and release on their own, about 3 to 3 ½ minutes. Turn each scallop gently and put it in a different part of the pan so the surface is hotter and gives the best sear. Cook the other side for another 3 to 3 ½ minutes.
- Transfer the scallops to a wire rack to drain excess oil while you prepare the sauce.
- For the pan sauce, heat the butter in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant. Add the wine, stirring constantly, and cook about 3 minutes, until alcohol is evaporated and the sauce becomes thick.
- Lastly add the soy sauce and mix all together. Remove the pan from heat and spoon the pan sauce over the scallops or serve in a separate bowl.