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Speedy shellfish ... scallops, shrimp, and oysters in a microwave.

Speed and simplicity: that's what a microwave oven gives to shellfish cookery in these three main dishes for two. Because you work with small portions, foods cook evenly and quickly. Each dish combines vegetables or pasta with the fish. You might offer a salad with the chowder and pasta, and cook a seasoned rice to go with scallops. Plan on fruit for dessert, and you are set for a relaxing evening.

Since microwave ovens vary widely in performance. Our cooking times are only guides. Standing times are important; foods continue to cook during this period. It's beter to undercook the foods and return them briefly to the microwave than to overcook. Scallops with Pea Pods 6 medium-size (2 to 3 in. across) fresh or dried shiitake mushrooms Water 1 green onion, including some top 3/4 pound scallops, rinsed and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices 3 quarter0size slices fresh ginger 5 teaspoons salad oil 4 teaspoons soy sauce 2 teaspoons dry sherry 1/2 pound edible-pod peas, ends and strings removed, rinsed well

Trim stems from fresh mushrooms and discard. Cut caps into thin slivers. If using dried mushrooms, soak in warm water for 20 minutes; squeeze to remove most of the moisture and cut off and discard stems. Cut caps into thin slivers.

Trim root from onion, then cut onion lengthwise in thin strips. Cut strips into 1-inch pieces. Reserve about a quarter of the onion slivers for garnish. Place remaining onions, mushrooms, scallops, ginger, oil, soy, and sherry in a shallow 1 1/2-quart nonmetal dish; mix to blend. Cover and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes; stir occasionally.

Spread scallop mixture in an even layer and cover loosely with waxed paper. Cook in a microwave oven on full power until scallops are opaque throughout, 3 to 5 minutes; stir every 2 minutes. Let mixture stand, covered, 4 to 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, place peas with water that clings to them in a shallow 1-quart non-metal dish. Cover snugly with lid or plastic wrap. cook in a microwave oven until peas are just tender to bite, about 3 minutes; stir after 2 minutes. Let stand 1 minute; uncover. Serve peas and scallop mixture; discard ginger pieces. Garnish with reserved onion. Makes 2 servings. Pesto Shrimp Pasta

In a food processor or blender, puree 1 cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves (or 1 cup lightly packed chopped parsley and 2 teaspoons dry basil), 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese, 1 clove garlic (cut in pieces), 3 tablespoons lemon juice, and 3 tablespoons olive oil to make pesto; set aside.

Pare yellow peel only from 1/2 lemon, then cut into thin strips; set aside.

Bring 3 quarts water to boiling in a 4- to 5-quart pan. add 6 ounces dry spaghetti or fettuccine and boil, uncovered, justuntil tender to bite, 8 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, mince or press 3 more cloves garlic and combine with an additional 1 tablespoon olive oil and 2 tablespoons butter or margarine in a shallow nonmetal 1 1/2-quart dish. Cook in a microwave oven on full power, uncovered, until garlic is soft, about 2 minutes.

Shell and devein 3/4 pound medium-size shrimp and mix with seasonings in dish. Cook in the microwave oven on full power, uncovered, until all shrimp are pink, about 4 minutes; stir after 2 minutes to bring cooked shrimp to center of sih. Stir in pesto sauce, cover, and let stand for 2 minutes.

Drain pasta well; mix with 1 more tablespoon butter or margarine and mound on a platter.

Spoon cooked shrimp and pesto mixture over pasta and lift with 2 forks to coat pasta strands with seasonings. sprinkle with the reserved lemon peel slivers. Makes 2 servings. Oyster Stew 3 tablespoons butter or margarine 1 small onion, finely chopped 1/2 cup finely chopped celery 1/2 cup finely chopped parsley 1 medium-size thin-skinned potato (peeled, if desired), cut into 1/2-inch cubes 1 can (14 1/2 OZ.) regular-strength chicken broth 1 cup whipping cream 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 2 tablespoons water 1 jar (10 OZ.) oysters, cut into pieces (reserve liquid) Salt and white pepper

Place butter in a deep 2-quart nonmetal dish. Cook in a microwave on full power until butter melts, about 30 seconds. Stir in onion, celery, 1/3 cup of the parsley, and potato. Cover snugly with lid or plastic wrap. Cook on full power just until potato is tender when pirced, about 10 minutes; stir once after 5 minutes.

Stir broth, cream, and cornstarch mixture into potato mixture. Cook, covered loosely with waxed paper, on full power until broth is bubbly, about 8 minutes; stir after 5 minutes. Mix in oysters and liquid. Cover and let stand 3 minutes. If oysters aren't done to you liking, let stand a few more minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste and top stew with remaining parsley. Makes 2 servings.
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No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1985 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:recipes
Publication:Sunset
Date:Mar 1, 1985
Words:820
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