September = Scallops!
Succulent, highly sought after and in season now: September = scallops!
The rich flavour, moist sweetness and melt-in-your-mouth texture of scallops has endeared these tasty shellfish to New Zealanders for generations, ensuring the season is keenly anticipated.
Commercial catches start in mid-July but hit their stride in September and October. While recreational fishing seasons vary across regions, the popular Whitianga Scallop Festival takes place on the 14th September 2013, making this the perfect month to celebrate scallops.
One of our most prized shellfish, scallops are nutritious as well as delicious, and provide a good source of vitamin B12, iodine and selenium, and a source of phosphorus, niacin, vitamin B6, zinc and magnesium.
Freshness is readily assessed when it comes to scallops. They should be bought plump and fresh, with firm, lustrous flesh showing no signs of discolouration. Scent is also a good indicator of freshness – scallops should smell slightly sweet and briny, but not sharp.
Tender and juicy, scallops have a wonderful propensity for caramelisation if cooked quickly on a high heat, with a light, gentle touch. Remove from heat as soon as the scallop flesh changes from translucent to white to avoid overcooking.
Grilled, barbequed, baked, seared, poached or sautéed - make the most of scallops this season!
For more information on scallops visit www.fishofthemonth.co.nz