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Sea Scallops With Ginger Black Bean Sauce Recipe

Photo Sea Scallops With Ginger Black Bean Sauce Recipe

As executive chef at Toronto's Nota Bene restaurant, David Lee has proved himself as one of Toronto's best. These mouth-watering hors d'oeuvres are topped with his own tangy black bean sauce. For last-minute entertaining, you can pick up a good quality black bean sauce from an Asian supermarket instead of making this one from scratch.

6 servings

Ginger Black Bean Sauce
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 small clove garlic
1 oz. freshly diced ginger
1/2 cup dried, fermented black beans (available in Asian supermarkets, no need to soak them in water for this recipe)
5 tbsp Chinese shao hsing wine
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp light soy sauce

12 fresh scallops (or high-quality individually-quick-frozen scallops, frozen while they're picked)*
12 slices cucumber, peeled
Lemon juice
Grated fresh ginger or puréed ginger, for topping
*Can purchase live scallops one day in advance.


Ginger Black Bean Sauce

Step 1: Sauté onion, garlic, ginger and beans in vegetable oil.

Step 2: Once onions are softened, add the Chinese shao hsing wine to deglaze.

Step 3: Add the honey and soy sauce, and cook on low until the mixture becomes a paste, about 15 minutes.


Step 1: Blanch the scallops in boiling water for 25 seconds.

Step 2: Shock the scallops in ice water.

Step 3: Torch the scallops with a blow torch or in a very hot skillet for 2 seconds each side.

Step 4: Arrange slices of cucumber on a serving platter. Lay a bamboo spoon or serving fork on top of each slice of cucumber.

Step 5: Place a scallop on top of each spoon or fork. Squirt scallops with lemon juice, add a dallop of bean sauce and garnish with a small dallop of grated fresh ginger or puréed ginger.


David Lee


Donna Griffith

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