Note: All the ingredients in stir-fry dishes must be very thinly and uniformly sliced (1/4-inch widths) to cook evenly in less than a minute. Small shrimp, already-cooked lobster slices, or monkfish may be substituted.
4 tablespoons sunflower, safflower, or peanut oil
1-inch knob unpeeled fresh ginger, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, mashed
1/2 pound scallops, carefully picked over for sand, each scallop cut into 4 to 6 thin slices
3 tablespoons flour mixed with 1/4 teaspoon salt and pinch of pepper
1 small red pepper, sliced
White part of 1 leek, sliced
2 small carrots, finely grated
1 wedge of red cabbage or radicchio, sliced
1 bunch scallions, cut into 1/4-inch diagonal pieces
2 heads Belgian endive or 1/2 head curly endive (white part only), sliced
1 bunch watercress, cut into 3-inch pieces, or 1 1/2 cups mustard greens, sliced
2-inch knob unpeeled fresh ginger, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely mashed
1 tablespoon dark red oriental sesame oil
Salt and pepper
Heat dry wok, heavy skillet, or sauté pan 1 to 2 minutes. Then add 1 tablespoon oil, and heat over high flame until hot but not smoking, about 1 to 2 minutes. Place first batch of ginger and garlic in hot oil, stir, and remove after 1 minute. This step flavors the oil. Discard ginger and garlic.
Toss scallops in flour mixture just before cooking. Add 1 tablespoon oil to wok, and heat until very hot. Place half the scallops in oil and stir-fry 45 seconds to 1 minute. Remove and place on warm plate. Add 1 more tablespoon oil, heat, and cook remaining scallops. Remove.
Add remaining tablespoons oil, heat, stir in half the vegetables (except ginger and garlic), stir-fry 30 seconds to 1 minute, and remove. Reheat oil, and stir-fry remaining vegetables. Remove.
Let oil reheat slightly, add ginger and garlic, and cook 1 minute. Add sesame oil along with already cooked scallops and vegetables. Stir-fry about 1 minute, tossing to reheat and mix ingredients evenly. Add salt and pepper. Serve immediately after soup.
Preparation Time: 20 Minutes
Cooking Time: 10 Minutes
From “Quick Cuisine: Winter’s Bounty,” originally featured in Domain, Winter 1987