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      Seared scallops over hoisin butter

      Light and fluffy seared scallops sit delicatly over hoisin butter on top of wilted spinach is a delicate and satisfying way to end the evening on a warm spring night.

      MOLLY STEVENS BON APPÉTIT APRIL 2009



      INGREDIENTS

      1/4 cup hoisin sauce*

      2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar

      1/4 teaspoon hot chili sesame oil*

      6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter, divided

      1/4 cup chopped shallot (about 1 large)

      1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon minced peeled fresh ginger

      4 garlic cloves, minced, divided

      1 serrano chile, seeded, minced, divided

      4 5-ounce bags baby spinach

      Coarse kosher salt

      2 pounds sea scallops, side muscles removed

      1 tablespoon peanut oil or vegetable oil

      3/4 cup finely chopped spring onions or green onions (white and pale green parts only)

      1/4 cup mirin (sweet Japanese rice wine)*

      PREPARATION

      1.)Whisk first 3 ingredients in small bowl to blend and reserve.


      2.)Melt 2 tablespoons butter in heavy large fry pan over medium heat. Add shallot, 1 tablespoon ginger, 2 minced garlic cloves, and half of minced chile. Sauté until shallot is soft, about 2 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high and add 1 bag spinach. Stir until beginning to wilt. Add remaining spinach, 1 bag at a time, stirring between additions until just wilted. Season with coarse salt and pepper. Keep warm.


      3.)Sprinkle scallops with coarse salt and pepper. Melt 1 tablespoon butter with peanut oil in heavy large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Cook scallops until brown on both sides and just opaque in center, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer scallops to plate; tent with foil.


      4.)Add 1 tablespoon butter, spring onions, remaining 1 teaspoon minced ginger, 2 minced garlic cloves, and remaining half of minced chile to skillet. Sauté until onions begin to soften, 1 to 2 minutes. Add mirin and simmer until reduced to glaze, 1 to 2 minutes. Whisk in hoisin mixture. Reduce heat to medium-low. 


      5.) Whisk in 2 tablespoons butter. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

      Divide spinach among plates. Top with scallops, dividing equally. Spoon sauce over and serve.