Grilled Scallops

I know, I know, another grilled recipe. Kind of repetitive. But, since Ari and I have been doing quite a but of grilling and very little actual cooking (hello, 95 degrees in NYC today), this is a pretty accurate representation of what we have been eating lately. My mom came for a visit last weekend (lovely) and we of course made a stop at the farmer's market to pick up peaches (first of the season!), cherries, zucchini, and scallops. Oh, scallops. I pretty much order them every time I get to go to a fancy restaurant (i.e. only if I am lucky enough to be taken to one), but has only made them myself a couple of times. The ones we bought were super fresh and tasted like they had been caught that morning -- all I did was throw them in a simple marinade for a couple of hours and you didn't need anything else. You could also use this same marinade but instead of grilling, sear them quickly in a very hot pan until golden brown on each side, 1-2 minutes. Simple summer cooking at its best.

Grilled Scallops (serves 4)

15-20 large scallops

1/2 cup orange juice

1/8 cup olive oil

1/4 cup basil leaves, julienned

1 teaspoon thyme, chopped

2 tablespoons capers

Salt and pepper, to taste

Combine all ingredients in a large plastic bag and marinate, at least one hour and up to overnight. Preheat grill. Thread scallops onto skewers and grill over medium-high heat until golden brown on each side but still slightly opaque in center, 3-5 minutes per side. Serve immediately.

Summer Grilling & Simple Chicken Kebabs

Ever since Ari brought home a free Craigslisted gas grill (an epic story which may or may not involve the subway), we have been grilling every chance we get. There's just something about cooking in the open air that makes everything taste that much better. We've made several dinners now solely by grilling (with the exception of the above scallops, which needed to be finished on the stove as we ran out of propane), including portabello mushroom burgers (great alternative to beef) and chicken skewers with tomato, avocado, hummus, and grilled flatbread. As you can tell by the pictures, there seems to be a common theme -- corn! I could seriously eat sweet corn every day of the summer, and grilling is my favorite way to make it -- just grill for a few minutes until slightly charred on all sides, then slather in butter and salt. I will certainly share more recipes for the grill soon -- and please excuse the pictures, as they were all taken with Instagram.

Chicken Kebabs (serves 4-6)

6 chicken breasts, cut into 2-inch cubes

Juice of 1 lemon

1/4 cup orange juice

2 tablespoons rosemary, chopped

1 tablespoon thyme, chopped

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Red onion, cut into large chunks (optional)

Combine chicken with lemon juice, orange juice, and all spices in a large covered bowl or plastic bag and marinate in fridge at least 1 hour and up to 1 day. Thread chicken pieces on skewers, alternating with red onion (if using), and grill over medium heat until cooked through and charred on each side, about 10 minutes per side. Alternatively, roast skewers on a baking sheet in the oven at 400 degrees until cooked through, about 15 minutes.

Note: be sure to soak wooden skewers in water before putting the chicken on them -- this will prevent them from burning.