Saturday, April 14, 2007

Mama's Favorite Scallops

My husband called me like 8 times yesterday afternoon, unbeknownst to me, since I was in class until 5:30 (I am one of those thoughtful people who never has the cell phone turned on). His frantic messaging availed him not. He finally got a-hold of me, and I was curious as to what the fuss was all about.
"We're going to the movies tonight, right?" He asked, fairly keyed-up. I mean, it's just the movies, in Winston-Salem, for the love of monkeys.
"Um, yes...?"
"What time?" He presses aggressively. Sheesh. Maybe the boy needs a popcorn fix, I thought.
"I don't know. Whenever." I reply flippantly.
"It's playing at 6:45 at The Grand." He prompts. I'm still baffled as to his movies-are-crack attitude about this whole thing, but whatever.
"Ok, fine."
"You can do dinner by then?!" He asks, rather incredulously.
"Why yes. Yes I can." I reply, now rather amused.
"Why don't we eat leftovers?" He suggests anxiously. Like my father, Stephen does not like top miss previews. I have no idea why. If you ask me, previews were created for the sole purpose of allowing me the time to get extra butter onto my popcorn.
"Because I will have dinner ready when you get home. I already have chopped the vegetables." I say, starting to be exhausted with this whole tahoobahoo over the movies.
"Well, all right. If we miss the 6:45, we can always catch a later show." He concedes, unwittingly implying that dinner will NOT, in fact, be on time.
Gauntlet down, I harumph my way back to the kitchen to finish preparing one of the fastest, easiest meals you'll ever make -- forcing your significant other or family/guests/friends to rue the day they doubted your swiftness in the kitchen.

Mama's Favorite Scallops (because they are, in fact, one of her favorites)
Preheat your broiler and get out a 10 x 6 glass baking pan.

You'll need:
2 bell peppers (I like to get two different colors as a pretty contrast, red working nicely), sliced into strips
1 bunch scallions, cut into 2" pieces
1/2 C. fresh chopped Parsley
1 T. olive oil
4 minced garlic cloves
1 lb. sea scallops, patted dry
fresh ground pepper
1/4 c. dry white wine
2 oz. crumbled feta cheese
1 T. Ouzo (this is a freaky Greek liquor -- it's what they do so many shots of in My Big Fat Greek Wedding; if you don't have any on hand, use some anise extract, the licorice flavor brings out the taste of the seafood and cheese)

Once your veggies are chopped, you're pretty much done. Heat the oil in a skillet and add the garlic, just until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Then add in the wine and peppers, and bring to a boil. Then let them saute together, letting the flavors blend, for about 10 minutes. Add in the fresh ground pepper and scallops and cook, turning only once, until opaque in the center, about 5 minutes. Stir in the scallions and parsley and cook all together for maybe 2 more minutes. Then pour the whole skillet into your bake pan and sprinkle on the ouzo followed by the feta cheese. Pop it uncovered under the broiler for two minutes, just letting the cheese get browned and bubbly.

Makes four servings, at all of 200 calories per serving, and goes great with brown rice or rolls. Between the cooking and the quick devouring of such a delicious meal, you'll be out the door and on your way to the movies in no time!!

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