Okay, so I know that after Labor Day, everyone is ready for summer to end and for fall to begin. Pumpkin desserts and all things cinnamon-spiced start appearing everywhere. I, on the other hand, am still trying to soak up every last bit of summer. This is most likely my last summer recipe for the season, but I like to think I saved the best for last. These Cajun blackened scallops with coconut creamed corn are one of those easy to prepare but crazy delicious meals. Served with a chipotle avocado tomato salsa, you better believe that this is jam-packed full of flavor!
Blackened Scallops with Coconut Creamed Corn
Chipotle avocado tomato salsa
- 1 avocado diced
- 2 tomatoes diced
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- ¼ cup finely chopped red onion
- juice of ½ lime
- 1 teaspoon canned chipotle adobo juices
- salt and pepper
Coconut creamed corn
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 corn on the cob shucked
- 1 tablespoon flour
- ¾ cup coconut milk
- ¼ cup grated parmesan
- salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 lb scallops
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- ½ teaspoon cayenne
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- chopped cilantro for garnish
- Make chipotle avocado tomato salsa. Combine avocado, tomatoes, cilantro, red onion, and juice of ½ lime. Open canned chipotle and mix in 1 teaspoon of just adobo juices. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
- Melt butter in a saute pan over medium-high heat. Add corn and cook until slightly charred, about 3-4 minutes. Add flour and stir to coat corn. Add coconut milk and parmesan, stirring to combine. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 3-4 minutes or until thickened. Season with salt and pepper and keep warm.
- Pat dry scallops and remove side muscle. Combine seasoning mixture including paprika, oregano, cayenne, cumin, salt, black pepper, and onion powder. Season both sides of the scallops generously with seasoning mix.
- Heat butter in medium saute pan over medium-high heat. Lay scallops in an even layer and cook until seared and blackened, about 3-4 minutes. Flip and cook until blackened and firm. Remove from heat.
- Transfer corn to serving platter and place scallops on top. Spoon salsa on top and finish with chopped cilantro. Serve immediately.
**Helpful tips and common mistakes
Just recently I started paying attention to the advertisements to the local markets and realized that I was missing out on all of the special sales! The Sprouts market nearby has a sale every weekend that I was clearly not taking advantage of. It just so happened that the previous weekend was a seafood sale. Scallops were only $7.99 per pound and large jumbo shrimp were only $6.99! I had to jump at the opportunity and buy some for myself.
I thought the best way to prepare these scallops was to highlight some of summer's great harvest before they were all gone. Freshly shucked corn with a little bit of coconut milk, a refreshing salsa, a squeeze of lime juice, and some Cajun seasonings, and voila, you have one delicious meal.
This blackened scallops dish comes together quickly so let's start by preparing the salsa. Chop up some tomatoes, avocado, cilantro, and red onion, toss it together with the canned chipotle, and season. Let the chipotle avocado tomato salsa sit while you prepare the remaining ingredients.
Next, make the coconut creamed corn. I always thought traditional creamed corn is one of the unhealthiest ways to prepare corn. All of that butter, heavy cream and cheese take away from the natural sweetness of the corn. By adding just coconut milk and a touch of parmesan, this version of creamed corn is much healthier but still delicious.
Wipe the skillet clean and get ready to cook the scallops. Make sure to pat the scallops dry to get a nice crust. Season both sides with a generous amount of the seasoning mix and saute on a saute pan over medium-high heat until seared and blackened.
Just a handy tip: when you purchase the scallops, pat them dry immediately and lay them on a plate until you're ready to cook them. In most cases, the scallops were previously frozen or sitting on a pile of ice. Pat them dry beforehand to soak up the excess water and help produce a beautiful crust later on.
Plate your bowls with the coconut creamed corn, blackened scallops, and salsa. Now grab a fork and get a big mouthful of all that goodness. These scallops were even better than I had expected. The crunch from the salsa with the creaminess of the corn and the spiciness of the scallops go together so well. With this dish, I might just be ready to say goodbye to summer.
For more scallop inspiration, check out this red curry risotto with shrimp and scallops!