TUNA AND SCALLOPS IN GINGER/GARLIC SAUCE
Tonight I finally rolled up my sleeves and got back into the kitchen, and I think the following Chinese-style seafood braise (loosely based on a procedure from Gloria Bley Miller's "Thousand Recipe Chinese Cookbook") was a real success. Better still, it's quick and very easy to do.
First, prepare your seasoning ingredients: In one dish, a "coin" of fresh ginger, a smashed garlic clove and a dried red chile papper; in another, a teaspoon each of finely minced garlic and ginger and two fresh scallions cut into one-inch lengths; in a cup, a mixture of 1/2 cup warm water, 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce, and 2 tablespoon sherry.
Cut an 8-ounce piece of fresh yellowfin tuna into 1-inch cubes. Rinse and set aside 8 ounces of fresh scallops.
Heat up a wok until it's sizzling, then drizzle in 2 tablespoons peanut oil. Stir-fry the tuna chunks until they just lose their red color; then add the scallops, toss-fry quickly, and stir in the garlic, ginger and scallion mix. Stir-fry for a minute or two, then add the water/soy/sherry mix, bring to the boil, and reduce heat to low. Simmer, uncovered, until the seafood and fish are just done; stir in a drop of sesame oil, and thicken with 1 teaspoon cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon water. Garnish with additional chopped scallions, and serve with steamed rice.
We played a little game with this one, trying it against both a white wine and a red (an Austrian Gruner Veltliner and an Argentine Pinot Noir), and found the results about as you'd expect: The white made a fantastic match with the scallops, literally a match made in heaven; it went nicely with the tuna, though it didn't knock our socks off. The Pinot went well with the tuna, but made an odd and less-than-pleasant combo with the scallops; something in the red wine brought out a "fishy" quality in the shellfish that wasn't apparent at all when we tasted them by themselves or with the white.