One-Pot Wonders

Sea Scallops in Thai Red Curry

April 12, 2010
5 Ratings
  • Serves 6
Author Notes

The scallops can be served over linguini for a contemporary twist. You can also substitute Thai green or yellow curry paste for the red. REMEMBER, you can always add more curry paste to taste, but you cannot remove it once it's been added, so add it a little at a time. - epicureanodyssey —epicureanodyssey

Test Kitchen Notes

This is a nice complex, flavorful curry that doesn't overpower the taste of the scallops. The little bit of sugar in the sauce helps highlight the scallops' sweetness. The creamy coconut milk helps tame the heat and adds a nice richness. The fresh flavors of the cilantro and green onions are nice, plus they add a bit of crunch. The recipe has a couple of steps, but it's all done in one pan and comes together very quickly -- try it instead of ordering Thai take-out. - Stephanie —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 fresh Thai red chiles, thinly sliced
  • 2 bunches green onions, white & green parts, thinly sliced, separated
  • 2 1/2 pounds large sea scallops
  • 2 14-ounce cans best quality coconut milk, such as Mae Ploy
  • 2 tablespoons Thai red curry paste
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons palm sugar or light brown sugar, or more to taste
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce (nam pla), or more to taste
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, or more to taste
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • steamed jasmine rice, to serve
  1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over moderately high heat until hot, but not smoking. Saute' chile and white parts of scallions, stirring occasionally, until lightly golden. Transfer with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Set aside.
  2. Pat scallops dry and season with salt. Heat remaining oil in the same skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking. Cooking in batches, so as not to crowd, saute' scallops until light golden, about 2 minutes on each side (scallops will be ALMOST cooked through). Transfer to a bowl with any juices that may have accumulated and set aside.
  3. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons curry paste, stirring, and saute' for 30 seconds. Add the coconut milk 1/4 cup at a time until well incorporated. Taste, then mix the remaining 1/2 tablespoon curry paste with a little of the coconut milk mixture in a small bowl, and add if you'd like a little more heat. Stir in the palm sugar, fish sauce and lime juice to the skillet and simmer until slightly thickened, stirring occasionally, approximately 5 minutes. Taste sauce and correct seasoning with .
  4. Add the scallops with their liquid to the sauce and heat to a quick simmer. Reduce heat and simmer for approximately 1-2 minutes just to reheat the scallops, being careful not to overcook.
  5. To serve, remove scallops to a wide heated bowl and pour sauce over scallops. Sprinkle with scallion greens/red chile mixture and cilantro. Serve over steamed Jasmine rice.
Contest Entries

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Trinity Dempster
    Trinity Dempster
  • Barb Vanorsdale Hartley
    Barb Vanorsdale Hartley
  • student epicure
    student epicure
  • epicureanodyssey

11 Reviews

Jack J. December 4, 2020
Great recipe! Happy eaters. We respected the recipe in full, but also added one tablespoon of Indian ginger/garlic sauce. I think that was wise. Regardless, this is a keeper
Trinity D. August 3, 2020
I made this for dinner last night with green curry and had to omit the fish sauce because I didn’t have any - my family loved these flavours and we will definitely make it again - recipe very easy to follow and fun to make - we added large Thai tiger shrimp with the scallops -yum !
epicureanodyssey December 5, 2020
So happy you enjoyed a taste of Thai! Tiger shrimp is a perfect addition. Be well and stay safe.
Barb V. July 1, 2020
I made this for dinner tonight. Served it with jasmine rice and a Thai mango/bean sprout salad. This was sooo good. Since it is just me and hubby, I only used 12 oz. of scallops. But because it is next to impossible to pare down the sauce recipe, I made it as written. Besides, when it comes to sauce or gravy, there had better be plenty of extra in our house. I am pretty sure hubby would have drank the leftover sauce, if I didn't remove it from the table. Due to Covid19 (and hubby's underlying, compromising conditions), we have been travelling around the world through food.
Susie October 8, 2017
Oops. The last sentence in step 3 is incomplete!
epicureanodyssey October 8, 2017
You are absolutely right! Sorry ‘bout that! Here is correction: Taste sauce and correct the balance with sugar, fish sauce and lime juice.
Susie October 9, 2017
Thanks much for the correction!!!
epicureanodyssey October 9, 2017
My pleasure!
madhatrk April 7, 2011
I made this the other night... YUM! I used 2lbs of farmed bay scallops instead of sea scallops and used a bit more of the red curry paste than called for (2.5T). Served over steamed Japanese rice.
student E. April 12, 2010
beautiful photo and delicious looking recipe. i always love asian-inspired seafood!
epicureanodyssey April 13, 2010
I am an avid fan of World Food, so you will typically find my recipes have an ethnic twist. Thanks, "student epicure". My web site is full of world recipes.