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20 mins

As a typical South-east Asian, I don’t eat an awful lot of dairy, but as I get older I’ve started to worry about the lack of calcium in my diet. I did some research and found out that sesame seeds contain a surprising amount of calcium. So here is a recipe for Japanese-style scallops using said seeds and even a bit of butter – delicious, and you can also feel like you’re doing your bones some good. Osteoporosis be damned!

Serves 2 | Takes 20 minutes to make, 5 minutes to cook

Cook’s Tips
Scallops often stick and leave a ‘skin’ in the frying pan. You can prevent this by making sure the scallops are not wet when they go into the pan. Dry by dabbing them with kitchen paper beforehand.

This dish is also really good with a Japanese sesame salt called gomashio sprinkled on the scallops, though slightly less pretty. Leave out the shoyu. Pound the toasted sesame seeds in a pestle and mortar to a fine powder, then mix with 1 teaspoon salt.

Posted by Bloomsbury Published See Bloomsbury's 41 projects » © 2019 MiMi Aye / Bloomsbury · Reproduced with permission. · Extract taken from Noodle!, published by Absolute, £12.99, paperback. Photography © Mike Cooper
  • Step 1

    Toast the sesame seeds in a dry frying pan over a medium-high heat for 5 minutes until fragrant, tossing occasionally so they don’t stick or burn. Tip the seeds into a saucer and set to one side. (Don’t wash the pan yet.)

  • Step 2

    Cook the noodles according to the packet instructions; drain, then dress with the sesame oil and salt. Set to one side.

  • Step 3

    Heat the butter in the frying pan over a high heat until sizzling. Add the scallops and sear for 2 minutes on each side. Sprinkle with the soy sauce, then toss the scallops in what is now a soy butter sauce.

  • Step 4

    Divide the dressed noodles between 2 shallow serving bowls. Top each with 3 scallops and sprinkle with the toasted sesame seeds and some shichimi pepper, if using. Serve with a green side salad.

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