Autumn is one of my favorite seasons: The cool weather, the changing leaves and a new batch of seasonal ingredients, especially butternut squash.
Though it’s technically a fruit, we think of butternut squash as a vegetable. It’s full of antioxidants, loaded with vitamin A, and rich in potassium and magnesium. Plus, it’s creamy, sweet and luscious—and in this recipe, I give it an exotic twist by combining it with coconut and ginger.
For their part, scallops are great for weeknight meals because they’re so quick to prepare. For perfectly cooked scallops, dry them with a paper towel before cooking, which removes excess liquid that would keep them from developing a nice golden-brown sear.
Steam your squash in advance and you can have this healthy, delicious meal on the table in minutes.
BIO: Chef Stephanie Harris-Uyidi is the producer and host of the popular travel-adventure-cooking Z Living Network series The Posh Pescatarian, and author of the cookbook by the same name.
- 2 cups steamed butternut squash, cut into chunks
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- Sea salt
- ¼ cup canned full-fat coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened dried coconut
- 8 large sea scallops
- 1 tablespoon granulated garlic
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon ghee (clarified butter) or avocado oil
- Micro greens, for garnish (optional)
- In a medium pan, combine squash, butter and a pinch of salt. Using a potato masher, mash the squash and add in a pinch of sea salt. Stir in 2 Tbsp. coconut milk, ginger and dried coconut. Cover and let stand until ready to serve.
- Dry scallops with a paper towel; season on both sides with a pinch of salt, garlic and thyme. In a cast-iron skillet, melt ghee over high heat. When ghee is melted and hot, gently add scallops to skillet (do not let them touch). Sear scallops for 1 1/2 minutes, then flip and cook for 1 ½ minutes on the other side, until the scallops have a golden crust on each side but are still translucent in the center.
- Stir the squash mixture, adding the remaining 2 Tbsp. coconut milk if it’s too dry. Divide squash mixture between two plates, top with scallops, garnish with micro greens, if desired, and serve.