Seared Scallop Tacos with Green Chile Chutney

scallop seafood tacos


6 green Anaheim chiles

1 small jalapeño pepper

8 large sea scallops

¾ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning

Freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon canola oil

½ teaspoon cumin seed, toasted and ground

2 teaspoons dried Mexican oregano, toasted and ground

¼ cup apple cider vinegar

¼ cup sugar

1 teaspoon chipotle chile in adobo

½ cup sour cream

¼ cup fresh lime juice

6 or 8 corn or flour tortillas

1 cup shredded green cabbage


Preheat the oven to high broil.

Place the Anaheim chiles on a sheet pan on the highest rack in the oven. Use tongs to turn the chiles every minute until they are completely black on all sides. (You can also blacken the chiles over an open flame on the grill—just be careful not to let them catch fire.) Place the chiles in a bowl, cover the bowl tightly with aluminum foil, and let sit for 10 minutes to cool—this will also steam the skin loose. Once the chiles are cool, wipe off the skin gently with your fingers. Do not use water to get blackened skin off chiles; the flavorful oils will get washed away. Remove the seeds and finely chop the chiles. Set aside.

Finely chop the jalapeño, removing the seeds for milder chutney or leaving them in for the maximum heat. Add the jalapeño to the Anaheims and set aside.

Rinse the scallops well and pat dry with a paper towel. Remove the rubbery lip from the side of each scallop. Season with salt and pepper.

In a medium skillet over medium high heat, add the canola oil. Once the oil is hot (you will see a haze coming off the oil), add the scallops to the pan. Sear on the first side until a nice golden crust forms, about 3 minutes. Flip over the scallops and continue cooking until the sides of the scallops turn from translucent to opaque, about 1 minute. Be careful not to overcook. Remove from the pan and set aside. The scallops will continue to cook when you remove them from the pan due to the residual heat.

In a separate medium skillet over medium heat, add the cumin and oregano. Toast for 1 minute just until you can smell the perfume of the spices. Add the vinegar, sugar and ½ teaspoon of the salt and bring to a boil. Add the chopped Anaheim and jalapeno chiles and simmer until the mixture thickens but still easily flows from side to side as you tilt the pan. Using a rubber spatula, remove the chutney to a bowl and let cool. It will continue to thicken as it cools. (Will last for 3 weeks in a tightly closed container in the refrigerator.)

Smash the chipotle chile in a bowl. Use a fork to stir in the sour cream and the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt. Pour in the lime juice and mix well. Set aside at room temperature.

Toast the tortillas until warm, soft and slightly golden. Lay them on three or four plates. If not serving right away, place the tortillas in a bowl and cover with a dry towel.

Divide the shredded cabbage evenly among the tortillas. Cut the scallops into pieces and lay them on the cabbage. Top with the chutney, then the seasoned sour cream. Enjoy!

*For Jeffrey Saad’s full story, Click Here