The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC

August 22, 2012

Bounty of the Sear

Karen Freeman

TARBORO — I'm currently working in Charleston. Probably until about the end of November. Of course that means great seafood. I can go down and buy it within a few hours of it coming off the boats. I love it! There is absolutely nothing that I love more than good seafood. Besides, I need the Omega 3's that come from eating seafood. So do you!

Our first recipe doesn't come from the docks in Charleston. It comes from my previous assignment in Portland Oregon. Salmon is not a North Carolina or South Carolina fish. But, it's still great and I love it. This is a great recipe with the caramelized cauliflower.

The second recipe is my all-time favorite food in the world. In fact, several years ago, friend gave me a few pounds of this for my birthday. It's snow crab legs. They are easy to make and delicious to eat. Food Lion puts them on sale fairly regularly.

The next dish is lump crab with penne paste. It's another really easy dish to make. You don't have to use penne pasta, that's just my favorite. You can use any pasta that you like. I have even made this using spaghetti noodles.

The fourth recipe is shrimp scampi. My family loves this one. I used to make this at the hospital for the night shift staff but I made it on top of linguine noodles and it was great.

The last recipe is prosciutto wrapped scallops. If you can't find prosciutto, you can use bacon. Smokey bacon works best.

Lemon Grilled Salmon with Caramelized Cauliflower



2/3 Cup Sea Salt

1 Cup Sugar

2 Tsp White Pepper

2 Tbsp Lemon Zest

2 Salmon Fillets

Combine the salt, sugar and pepper in a small mixing bowl. Coat the salmon fillets with the zest. Pour a thin layer of salt/sugar mixture on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Place the salmon fillets on the salt/sugar mix. Pour the remaining mixture over the salmon. Allow to sit refrigerated for 2-1/2 hours. Rub the cure off the salmon using dry paper towels. Do not rinse. Split the salmon fillets in half horizontally. Grill the salmon, turning once, until cooked to desired doneness.


1 Small Head Of Cauliflower

2 Tbsp Olive Oil

Salt And Pepper To Taste

Slice the cauliflower into 3/4-inch slices from the top to bottom. Chop any excess cauliflower into 1/4-inch pieces. Heat a heavy-bottomed skillet over a medium-low flame until hot. Brush the cauliflower slices on one side with olive oil and place in the hot skillet oiled side down. Sauté until well browned (approximately 8 minutes). Brush the exposed side of the cauliflower slices and turn over. Sauté until well browned. Season with salt and pepper, remove from skillet and keep warm. Add the chopped cauliflower to the skillet and sauté with the remaining oil until well browned. Set aside for herb salad

To plate: Place equal portions of sliced cauliflower in the center of 4 warm plates. Place a grilled salmon fillet over each cauliflower. Sauce the plate with the remaining salmon dressing.

Snow Crab Legs

2-3 Clusters of Snow Crab Legs with Claws


1 Bouquet Garni (parsley, thyme, bay leaf)

1/4 Cup Crab Boil

3 Lemons, cut in half

2 Garlic Heads, slit in half

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add bouquet garni, crab boil, lemons and garlic. Add the crabs first, removing the crabs as they become cooked.

In a sauce pan, melt 1/4 cup of butter with a few peeled garlic cloves. Simmer the butter for 3-4 minutes to infuse the garlic into the butter. Remove from the heat and discard the garlic cloves. Serve immediately as a dipping sauce.

Drawn Butter

1/2 pound unsalted butter

Place the butter in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Boil for 1 minute.

Set the saucepan aside and let the butter settle, undisturbed. The milk solids will come to the top of the butter and the watery whey will collect on the bottom. Skim off the milk solids with a spoon and pour the drawn butter into a serving bowl or several small ramekins, taking care not include the watery liquid in the bottom of the pan. Serve with snow crab legs.

Lump Crab with Penne Pasta

2 Cans Lump Crabmeat

1 Can Italian Diced tomatoes

3 Clove Garlic, minced

2 Tsp Minced Onion

1 Tbsp Dried Basil

1/2 Stick Margarine

1 Package Penne Pasta, cooked by package directions in very salty water

Melt margarine in medium saucepan. Add basil, garlic and onion and sauté. Drain and add diced tomatoes. Heat through. Add crab and simmer for 10 minutes. Toss with penne pasta and garnish with fresh basil leaves.

Shrimp Scampi

1-1/2 Lbs. Shrimp, large, deveined

1 Stick Margarine or Butter

4 Cloves Garlic, minced

1/2 Cup White Port or Dry White Wine

1/4 Lemon (or 2 Tbsp. Lemon juice)

1/4 Cup Parsley, chopped (flat or Italian)

1/4 Tsp. Freshly ground pepper, white is prettiest

1/4 Tsp. Salt

1/2 Tsp. Basil, dried is okay, fresh is better

1 Lb. Cooked Linguine

Wash, peel and devein the shrimp.

In a medium, non-stick skillet, sauté garlic, parsley, pepper, salt and basil in margarine until garlic is translucent, be careful, garlic burns easily.

Add shrimp and reduce heat to low.  Continue to sauté, stirring frequently. Cook for about 3 to 5 minutes depending on size of shrimp.  Do not overcook the shrimp or they will become rubbery.

Slowly add white port and lemon juice and continue cooking until most of port has evaporated. If you leave the port/wine without cooking it off, it will have a strong alcohol taste.

If you want extra sauce to pour over the pasta, add more butter or some olive oil at this time, cook for another minute. Toss shrimp and linguine together in skillet. After plating, garnish with a sprinkle of parsley and lemon wedges on the side.

Prosciutto-wrapped Grilled Scallops

10 Paper-Thin Slices of Prosciutto (may use bacon instead)

10 Sea Scallops

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil

Spices (as desired)

Preheat the grill. Season each scallop with olive oil and spices (I recommend a mixture of garlic powder, onion powder, thyme, black pepper and salt). Wrap the sides of each scallop with the prosciutto.

If using bacon, wrap before grilling and secure with a toothpick. Grill each scallop for 2-3 minutes on each side. Remove from the grill and allow to cool.