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Video: Grilling Italian-style

TODAY
updated 7/22/2008 9:52:53 AM ET 2008-07-22T13:52:53

If you're grilling tonight, think of bringing a little Mediterranean flavor to your table — because that's what chef Mario Batali did in his latest book, "Italian Grill." It features new grilling techniques and 80 delicious recipes, including the two on today's menu: grilled lamb chops scottadita and sea scallops alla caprese.

Recipe: Grilled lamb chops scottadita (on this page) Recipe: Sea scallops alla caprese (on this page)

Want more great recipes? Browse inside Mario Batali's "Italian Grill" at Harper Collins' Web site


Recipe: Grilled lamb chops scottadita

Ingredients
  • Grated zest of 3 lemons
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped mint, plus 4 whole sprigs for garnish
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 24 lamb rib chops (about 3 1/2 pounds)
  • 1 cup goat's-milk yogurt (Coach Farm)
  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds, toasted and finely ground in a spice grinder
Preparation

Combine two-thirds of the lemon zest (reserve the rest for garnish), the chopped mint, sugar, and 1 teaspoon each salt and pepper in a food processor and process until the mixture has the texture of coarse sand.

Rub each chop well on both sides with a little of the mint mixture. Place on a baking sheet or platter, cover, and set aside at room temperature.

Preheat a gas grill or prepare a fire in a charcoal grill.

Combine the yogurt and cumin in a small bowl, blending well. Season with salt and pepper and transfer to a small serving bowl. Set aside.

Grill the chops, turning once, until medium-rare, about 2 minutes on each side. Pile the chops on a serving platter and garnish with the reserved lemon zest and the mint sprigs. Set out the cumin yogurt next to the platter, and serve immediately.

Serving Size

Serves 6

Recipe: Sea scallops alla caprese

Scoring the scallops before grilling makes them open up like a flower, and the contrast between the golden brown surface and white interior is striking. The trick here is to cook the scallops 90 percent on the first side, until very well seared, then just give them a quick finish on the other side.

Ingredients
  • 2 pounds mixed great heirloom tomatoes
  • 24 fresh basil leaves
  • 3 medium red onions, cut into 1-inch-thick slices
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 5 to 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 12 giant diver scallops (about 2 ounces each)
  • 2 tablespoons Maldon salt or other coarse sea salt
  • 1 lemon, cut in half
Preparation

Preheat a gas grill or prepare a fire in a charcoal grill. Place a piastra on the grill to preheat.

Slice the tomatoes creatively (leave very small ones whole, or halve them) and lay out on a platter. Tear the basil leaves over the tomatoes, strewing them about. Set aside.

Season the onion slices on both sides with salt and pepper. Place them on the hot dry piastra and cook, unmoved, for 7 to 10 minutes, until well charred on the first side. Using tongs, carefully turn the slices over and cook for 7 to 10 minutes on the second side, until well charred and softened. Transfer to a plate and let cool slightly, then separate the onion slices into smaller rings and scatter them over the tomatoes. Drizzle the whole mess with 3 to 4 tablespoons of the olive oil.

While the onions cook, carve a checkerboard pattern about 1/4 inch deep into one side of each scallop. Season them all over with salt and pepper, toss them in a bowl with the remaining 2 tablespoons oil, and stir gently to coat.

Place the scallops on the dry clean piastra, design side down, and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, unmoved, until almost cooked (they should be opaque almost all the way through). Flip them over and sear for just 30 seconds, then remove and arrange on the tomato salad.

Sprinkle the tomatoes with the Maldon salt, squeeze the lemon halves over the scallops and tomatoes, and serve.

Serving Size

Serves 6

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