Category Archives: Seafood

FOOD - "The Delicious" - Healthy - Homemade - Recipes - Seafood

Recipe: Seared scallops with vegetables

September 4, 2015

I’m the person who runs at the gym while watching the Food Network, and during my down time at work (when not testing lipstick swatches), I’m reading articles on food. I came across one about how to sear scallops the right way, and I became enticed by the idea of trying it myself.

My seared scallops!

My seared scallops!

I realized it’s not difficult at all when prepped the right way. A few things I learned:

1) Make sure to buy DRY scallops as opposed to wet ones. The quality is better and it’s easier to cook. Wet scallops are treated with sodium tripolyphosphate (STP), I learned which makes it difficult to sear because it absorbs so much moisture. A lot of grocery stores serve them this way. DRY scallops are a little more expensive, but more fresh and have a better flavor. Dry ones are more fleshy and translucent compared to wet ones, which look opaque, pale, or white.

2) Cook it in very hot oil.The first problem with scallops occurs before you even buy them.* Many scallops are treated with sodium tripolyphosphate (STP), a chemical that, while perfectly safe to consume, wreaks havoc on your ability to achieve a proper sear. In the industry, chemically treated scallops are called wet scallops, and they’re the norm in most supermarkets, including the one where I’d bought mine.

3) Get friendly with salt.

I went to Whole Foods to buy one, and pricier is right — they were $25 per pound but found worth paying more for. Here’s how I made mine.

First I let them sit in paper towels to absorb any excess moisture. I pressed another paper towel on top to absorb maximum water (I let it sit for about 20 minutes).

Prepping scallops on paper towels with seasoning

Prepping scallops on paper towels with seasoning

I then seasoned it with salt, pepper, and a pinch of garlic salt and let it sit for a few minutes more.

Next, I added canola oil to a frying pan over high heat and let it sit for a minute so it’s really hot.

Cooking the scallops

Cooking the scallops

Next, I placed each scallop in the pan and let it fry for a few minutes until the bottom is slightly brown. Don’t keep turning it to check the scallop — let it fry for a good few minutes before you turn it over.


When it’s ready, turn it over and sear the other side.



Et voila. That’s it. It was the first time I’ve ever seared scallops and they turned out delicious if you just prep it right.



I baked asparagus (just put fresh stems with olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic salt) until slightly browned. I found it’s the best way to serve them so it’s not soggy. I also separately cooked corn over the stove with butter, and added salt, pepper, cayenne, and some Italian seasoning. You can serve it whatever you want, of course — this is just the way I chose to do it to keep it less heavy and it tasted delicious together. Anyone going to try? Make sure to tag me so I can see your creation :).

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Craving of the Day - FOOD - "The Delicious" - Recipes - Seafood

Recipe: Seafood Ceviche with Kiwifruit

March 4, 2013

A while back, I was collecting recipes from winning teams of an Iron Chef competition I helped judge where the secret ingredient all the teams had to use was kiwi. Here’s another recipe of a dish I loved: Seafood Ceviche with Kiwifruit, with sides of spiced plantain chips, chili popcorn, and corn on the cob with Kiwifruit-Jalapeno relish. Following is a little more about the delicious dish from the team:

Seafood Ceviche with Kiwifruit

Ceviche is a common seafood dish that is native to many south and Central American countries. Seafood is marinated in a tangy citrusy juice, and the seafood cooks in the acidity of the juice. The kiwi was integrated in the citrus juice mix and also diced in as a component in the ceviche for a unique crunch.

Seafood Ceviche with Kiwifruit
(Recipe courtesy of Maryum Khwaja, Muhammad Umer Alam, and Mahjabeen Raza)
Preparation time: 1 hour to prepare, with 5-6 hours to refrigerate and let sit seafood.
Expertise required: This is an easy recipe, no stove required.
Served: About 50 people had a cup each.


• 3 pounds of fresh, deboned, thinly sliced firm fish. We used Flounder, but traditionally red snapper is used for Spanish Ceviche. Flounder worked really well. Cut into 1 inch cubes, or ask the fishmonger and he/she will dice it to perfection.
• 3 pounds of fresh, cleaned (with tails on) medium sized shrimp. We chose to keep the shrimp whole, but shredded or chopped shrimp is fine too.
• 8 cups of fresh orange juice (with pulp)
• 3 cups of fresh lemon juice
• 3 cups of fresh lime juice
• 1 cup of white vinegar
• 5 pounds of Kiwifruit 4 lbs- peeled and diced , 1 lb mashed (for citrus juice)
• 2-3 Kiwifruit – peeled and sliced, for garnishing on top of the Ceviche
• 4 medium onions – diced
• 4 medium tomatoes – diced
• 1 bunch of fresh cilantro – finely chopped
• 1 medium bottle of Aji-Amarillo pepper paste
• 1 can of Aji-Amarillo peppers – diced
• Kosher salt – to taste


In Pyrex or other glass/ceramic flat dish, place fish and shrimp and cover with the mashed Kiwifruit, citrus juices (orange, lemon, and lime) and vinegar. Cover with saran wrap and refrigerate. The acidity will cook the seafood. Every hour, stir seafood, as well as to blend the flavors. During this process, the seafood will start to change color. The fish will become whiter and the shrimp will lose their greyish color and start becoming pink and white.

This marinating process takes about 3-4 hours.

When the fish is almost-flaky and the shrimp somewhat-pliable to a fork’s teasing, add the rest of the ingredients, except the Aji-Amarillo pepper paste/peppers and Kiwifruit for garnishing. If you are sensitive to too much spice/chili heat, add the Aji-Amarillo pepper paste/peppers in little quantities, taste test, and repeat if necessary. For the amount of seafood, we used all the Aji-Amarillo pepper paste and peppers and the Ceviche was not burn-your-palate chili hot, it was rather mild.

Mix gently. Cover with saran wrap and refrigerate again.

Check an hour later. Mix gently.
Taste Test: Ceviche is not meant to be too tart or bland. It’s just right. Taste test the heck out of it. If it is too tart, do not hesitate to take out some liquid, and conversely, if it tastes bland, add some more lime or lemon juice.

Cover with saran wrap and refrigerate again.

After an additional hour, taste test. The flavors should be blended, seafood is soft and you feel like you need something crunchy to have with it.




Epicurious had a fantastic recipe, which we used. Here’s the link:
Preparation time: 30-45 minutes.
Expertise required: This is an easy recipe, stove required for frying.
Served: Made about 7 cups of chips.


• 1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated fresh lime zest, chopped
• 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
• 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
• 6 cups vegetable oil
• 4 green plantains (1 1/2 lb)


Spice mix: Stir together zest, salt, and cayenne.

Chips: Heat oil in a 5-quart heavy pot over moderate heat until a deep-fat thermometer registers 375°F. While oil is heating, cut ends from plantains and score skin of each plantain 5 times lengthwise, avoiding ridges. Soak in hot tap water 5 minutes and peel. Cut plantains lengthwise with a U-shaped peeler or manual slicer into very thin strips (about 1/6 inch thick). Fry strips, 6 at a time, turning frequently, until golden, 30 to 45 seconds. Transfer with tongs to paper towels and sprinkle crisps immediately with salt mixture.

You can make plantain crisps 2 days ahead and keep in an airtight container at room temperature.


Preparation time: 15 minutes.
Expertise required: This is an easy recipe, microwave required for popcorn.
Served: Made about 3 cups of popcorn.


• 1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated fresh lime zest, chopped
• 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
• 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
• One bag of microwave popcorn


Stir together the zest, salt and cayenne. Put popcorn in a large Ziploc bag and add spice mix. Shake well.


Preparation time: 15 minutes.
Expertise required: This is an easy recipe, stove required for boiling corn on the cob.
Served: relish is enough for 12 small sized corn on the cobs


• 12 small corn on the cob, boiled, drained
• 6 Kiwifruit — peeled, finely diced (about two cups of goodness)
• 1 cup of chopped cilantro
• 1 cup of chopped, diced jalapeno peppers. Seeds removed. We used the canned version.
• Kosher salt to taste
• 2 tablespoons lemon juice
• 2 table spoons of the spice mix used for the plantain chips


Add all ingredients, except the corn, in a bowl and mix gently. Taste Test.
Rub corn with spice mix left over from the plantain chips.
Serve relish over the corn on the cob.

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Beauty - "The Lovely" - FOOD - "The Delicious" - Hair - Seafood

Smooth sailing with Veet at Lure Fishbar

July 20, 2011

Yesterday, Veet (the “world’s number one depilatory brand) invited an intimate group of bloggers to learn about some of their launches over a tasty dinner at Lure Fishbar in SoHo.

Veet gel cream

Coincidentally, I just tried their Fast Acting Gel Cream which comes in the most convenient pump, a few days before. I bought it a while ago, but never gotten around to using it, and besides working extra fast (3 minutes!), the thing I appreciated the most was its smell — or lack of it rather. Depilatories can smell pretty…pungent? I used one from another brand previous to this and the whole bathroom was left smelling like chemicals. But these have a more discreet rose scent that left no trace of a hair removal cream at work. I also found out that they have a pretty cool In Shower Cream that’s water resistant so you won’t have to worry about it washing away before it does its thing. If you’re into waxing though, they JUST launched Ready-to-Use wax strips that works on hair as short as 2mm and lasts up to four weeks.

Beauty products and feasting

We also learned a few hair removal facts:

*The average woman spends 30 minutes/week removing pesky body hair
*Aside from weight gain, women feel hairy legs are the things that makes them feel the MOST unattractive
*Two-thirds of women postponed “getting intimate” w/ someone because they weren’t smooth
*Almost 48% of women have gone longer than 2 weeks without shaving their legs
*More women would rather go to the beach 5 pounds heavier than to have a visibly hairy bikini line

I thought it was a pretty interesting glance at how our culture views body hair, dontcha think? Anyway, we were all but ready to get our grub on because the menu looked ridonculously good. I went straight for the crispy calamari, steak, and chocolate cake (and I stole a pic of my friend, Rachel’s, tuna dish):

Starter potato chips

Crispy calamari with chili glaze

14 oz steak with fries


Warm Chocolate Cake salted caramel ice cream, popcorn brittle & chocolate

Warm Chocolate Cake salted caramel ice cream, popcorn brittle & chocolate

Apparently, they change their menu quite frequently so it could change the next time you go there. But as for my meal, the chili glaze on the calamari gave it an interesting, slightly tangy taste. It’s been a while since I’ve had good steak, and this one was phenomenally good, equally juicy and salted just right…every bite was perfect. And you can’t really go wrong with chocolate cake, except the popcorn brittle was kind of a weird side with the ice cream. I felt like it was a little out of place kinda got in the way of the taste a bit. But overall, so good…and apparently Kelly Ripa and fam also enjoy their food because they were eating right next door to our room (didn’t see her, but heard it afterwards on Twitter!).

Restaurant Info:
Lure Fishbar

142 Mercer Street (at Prince)
New York, NY 10012


Meal: Dinner
Occasion: Veet dinner
Price: $$$$$
(Out of three stars)
Ambiance: ** (it’s gorgeous but pretty loud for dinner)
Food: ***
Service: ***
Would I go back?: Yes…preferably if someone’s gonna treat me because I’m not sure my wallet could handle it.


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FOOD - "The Delicious" - Japanese - Seafood - Travel Feasts

Tatsu Sushi Bar in Chicago

March 4, 2011

Fried calamari

As some of you may know, I’m not big on sushi. I don’t hate it, I will occasionally order it…I’m just not a big sushi buff. I’ve definitely had good sushi before, but I guess my ambivalence makes sense because I’m generally not very big on seafood. But here’s the other thing about sushi– it’s like eight bites. Some people can get full on eight bites, and others are…like me? Anyway, I just don’t really have ‘sushi cravings’ or whatever. I tried to explain to this to my sister who LOVES sushi.

“SO…you don’t like sushi?”
“No, it’s not that I don’t like it…I just never crave it.”
“SO…you don’t like sushi?”

She can do this for hours. I think she eventually went on this “Let me convince Shyema to like sushi” thing because the last time I was in Chicago, she said once I eat Tatsu, I’ll have a different opinion. And when you go to Tatsu, apparently the thing to order is the crispy shrimp.

Crispy Shrimp sushi

Unless you’re Shaf, then you just order whatever the hell you want. I have no idea which kind she had, but here’s a pic (I wanna say salmon?):

Shaf wanted to be different.

And OK. I have to say, it really was one of the best I’ve had. The fried calamari we ordered (top) was also delicious. I was afraid my sister was going to hype it up, but I’ll give her props.

BUT back to my original point — it’s like, eight bites. I was happy, but not full. I kid you not, right after this we went to a Chinese restaurant next door to order their sweet and sour soup because apparently that’s the best too. Afterwards, we were walking to the car and I saw Busy Burger. I asked my sister if it’s any good, and she said it’s amazing….soooo I ordered a cheeseburger. It was freakishly amazing…so much so, I think it deserves it’s own post. Unfortunately, I downed that thing so fast, I didn’t even get to take a pic. And it was $3.75…$3.75! That’s unheard of in NYC (I love you, NY…but seriously, what the hell??).

Right after that, we may or may not have ordered three pies of Domino’s.

I wish I made this up.

Restaurant Info:
Tatsu Sushi Bar and Pan Asian

1062 W. Taylor St.
Chicago, IL 60607


FOOD - "The Delicious" - Seafood - Travel Feasts - Turkish

Stuffed Mussels in Istanbul

November 6, 2010

Most people know I’m not really big on seafood. The thing is, I want to like it, so I’ll always give it a try. Throughout Istanbul, there are street vendors selling stuffed mussels, which never looked particularly appetizing to me. I was a bit horrified when my sister told me she was craving when we passed them by one night. It just seemed like an odd thing to be sold off the street.

Mussel Stand in Turkey

Her roommate later told me I had to try it when she brought a bag of it home. I figured, they’re being sold all over the place for a reason and I should at least try it. It’s mixed with rice, and you use one side of the shell to scoop it out of the other. They also give you a fresh lemon so you can squeeze the juice over it.

Stuffed mussels

It doesn’t look the most appetizing, but it was seriously so good. The rice is soft and tender and the lemon gives it a nice zest. The only thing is, I was looking up more about these mussels in Turkey and found mixed reports about exactly how good they are for you. Not to scare you, but apparently because of the preparation and serving process, they can be a breeding ground for bacteria. I didn’t experience any side effects after downing about ten of them (yes, I went back the next night to buy some more for myself…ten medium-sized ones cost only $5). I figure if you have a weak stomach to stay away from them. But if you’re looking to dive into the local culture, it’s something to experience.