Scallops and Lemon Mint Couscous

Recently, I haven’t been able to get enough Israeli couscous, so I went on a couscous-making marathon on Sunday.  I have a habit of getting obsessed with a particular ingredient (amaranth, bulgur, risotto rice) and spending several weeks using that ingredient any way I can.

The first dish I made was inspired by our aero garden.  The mint has been growing like crazy lately, and Dan has been trying to figure out how to use it for the past week. For some reason he vetoed my idea of making an industrial-sized container of mojitos.
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It was over 80 degrees this weekend, so I was craving something fresh and citrusy.  I found a recipe for lemon mint risotto that sounded perfect.  Since I didn’t feel like making a full on risotto, I decided to tweak it for the Israeli couscous.  I paired it with some scallops that have been hiding in our freezer for several months;  apparently, if my blog is any indication, I only crave seafood when it’s hot. 

Although the lemon was a little strong, the couscous was a nice mix of sweet and tangy that went well with the scallops.  The scallops were mostly perfectly cooked, although one or two that were a tad rubbery.  The mint got lost in all of the other flavors, but it was still a perfect end to an 80 degree day.

Lemon Mint Couscous
Serves 3
Ingredients
1 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 Tbsp olive oil 
1 bunch scallions
1 cup Israeli couscous
1/2 cup dry vermouth
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
the zest and juice of one lemon
2 Tbsps chopped fresh mint leaves

Directions
Boil water in a medium saucepan.  Once it boils add the couscous for 5 minutes and drain.  Set aside in a medium bowl.

Heat 1 tablespoon butter and oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the scallions and sauté until for 2 minutes or until softened.  Add the vermouth and stir until it evaporates.

Pour the scallion mixture into the couscous and add 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, lemon juice and lemon zest. Add mint leaves and serve immediately.


Garlic Scallops
Ingredients
4 scallops
1 pat of butter
salt
pepper
1 T Olive Oil
2 cloves of garlic

Directions
In a separate skillet melt a pat of butter over medium high heat, add a Tablespoon of olive oil.  Make sure the scallops are as dry as possible and add them to the skillet with 1-2 inches of space between each of them.  Cook until they are opaque about 1-2 minutes per side. 

Serve together