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10 answers 7275 views
0f493ab9 068f 4498 ba2c 95c992214d52  sit2
Sam1148

Sam is a trusted home cook.

added almost 4 years ago

Clarified butter.

23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added almost 4 years ago

Sesame oil

23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added almost 4 years ago

Grapeseed oil or better yet bacon fat!

C8ffa92e 3766 46b4 8290 dbef5c382a03  james joyce 1
pierino

pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.

added almost 4 years ago

I agree on grapeseed oil. High smoke point so that you can your pan sizzling hot.

D575cae1 ec42 4b51 85df aabecf92a1d8  fredavatar
added almost 4 years ago

Did you ever try them without oil? Make sure the surface is dry and dust with a little flour (rice flour is great) salt & pepper, place in your very hot pan and don't move until ready to flip, about 2 minutes.

516f887e 3787 460a bf21 d20ef4195109  bigpan
added almost 4 years ago

I use half and half, grapeseed oil and unsalted butter - that allows for a higher temp on the butter which adds to flavour and crispness. Start with a hot pan. Turn once. Don't have to turn until you see a bit of golden on the edge and the scallops move easily on the pan. I use a non-stick.

A9f88177 5a41 4b63 8669 9e72eb277c1a  waffle3
added almost 4 years ago


Unfortunately, adding another oil will not raise butter's smoke point. It's the milk solids that burn first; clarifying is the only solution.

A9f88177 5a41 4b63 8669 9e72eb277c1a  waffle3
added almost 4 years ago


The term "best" is open to interpretation. One approach, and I will argue the best and overriding one, is from the perspective of flavor. Personal preference comes into play as well as the flavor profile you're aiming for. Clarified butter is an excellent choice.

If you're scared of saturated fat -- not that you should be, but many people still are -- you might want to skip the scallops entirely because they'll give you a good dose of cholesterol. Or eat them raw. Or, poach them.

Grape seed oil is mostly polyunsaturated and almost all of that is linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid. High consumption of omega-6 oils has been shown to inhibit the body's ability to process alpha-linolenic acid (omega-3) fatty acids.

Additionally, grape seed oil oxidizes quickly releasing carcinogenic free radicals in the process. That is an important attribute for storage (keep open bottles in the refrigerator) and it also indicates the product is unstable at high temperatures (not a good frying oil despite its high smoke point).

Extra light olive oil would be a much better choice.

F55c808e 9df3 4926 bd09 09f0524a8690  p1030363
added almost 4 years ago

I second bacon fat. You really can't go wrong there! Plus, it counts as recycling, right?

A0506599 a03d 4fc3 b2c1 bd2c0d9fa56e  bs farmer s table
Barton Seaver

Barton Seaver is a chef and author of Where There’s Smoke. He is a Fellow with National Geographic Society and the New England Aquarium.

added almost 4 years ago

I only sear scallops on one side so you get the most texture while maintaining control over the doneness. I prefer a light coating of canola oil on the bottom of the pan and then when 2/3 done, add in a pat of butter to help in the browning.