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Spicy Seared Scallops W/ Mango & Cilantro Relish

It makes me glad when I can keep a promise. Because so much of my time is taken up being a creative artist and not a conformist, it becomes difficult for me to be bound by a schedule. I don’t fear commitment, ever, but I’d rather go with the flow.

Unless that scheduled commitment involves money! Then I’m all game and will work around you.

Such was the case last week when I was asked to prepare an intimate and Summer’s Eve dinner to celebrate Father’s Day. Not just for anybody. It was for a power couple in Atlanta’s Socialite. The confirmation was a bit sketchy, though the menu had been approved. I didn’t panic, but I really wanted the gig. It could open doors. And right now, I need all doors wide open. Even the dog house door.

You know who you are.

1 pm the day of, and the Mrs. is like “can you still come over”? For a sit-down of 6:30, and a Grand Marnier flan as the dessert, I was so tempted to say “sorry, I need 24 hours”. But for the $ amount, I had to make it happen in 5 hours. I’m superwoman damn it. Make it work, B, make it work (Tim Gunn comes to mind when I need a push).

A super quick run to the bodega to pick up the necessary items. First issue: no ripe avocados for the shrimp and avocado salad. The sexually questionable produce guy calls the Pub*** down the street and yes! They have Miami avocados. I’m back in the game. I went back home first to start making the flan. At this point, it’s 3 p.m. You know flan, even with my short-cut method, takes at least 2.5 hours to even consider eating. I need to get one of those blast freezers.

No time for a trip to the Pub*** closest to me, so in 100 degree, nasty ass weather, and wearing my 4″ pumps, I haul ass to the supermercado closest to the client for that avocado. As if paying $4.10 per gallon weren’t enough, the damn fruit cost me $4.00 for one!!!! And I needed 3. I’m so serious, it’s not even funny. I don’t have a pic of this aguacate to show you, but since when do “low-fat” and “slimming” (this is exactly what the little sticker said) avocados cost $4.00?? Where’d they import these bad boys from?

Certainly NOT Cuba.

Oh, did I mention how I made the flan in 4 ramekins, and were jigglin’ all over the gift bag I placed them in. Another thing I need: a portable cooler for such delicacies.

I arrive with a box full of stuff, half-prepped food and gnarled flan. Great. I felt like I was a solo contestant in one of these Network competitions. A hell of a challenge, I swear.

But, I’m boastful to announce, that my same-day notice mission was gracefully presented. And only 30 minutes behind schedule. Appetizer, main courses and dessert were fully devoured. Unfortunately, I was too flustered to take pics of this classy eve, but I was so content with their reaction to the spicy seared scallops–a first-time, un-tried recipe–I had to make it again just to share with you guys.

My promise, kept.

The coolest part about making these scallops again, is that I video-taped it. My super cool, indie film-maker friend Tim, has offered to tape and help edit. The vid is done, but he’s fire-wiring, it so I won’t have it ’til later today. So make sure to check FLANBOYANT EATS TV (over to the right). I’ll tell you now, there are some funny goofs. About 4 to 5! We didn’t retake anything, cuz I kind of like going with the flow. Like at the end of the vid, I spell out the sites URL, but totally leave out “EATS” before saying dot com. Major Duh. Somebody remind me I have a $40k education from a bougie ass University, with a degree in English Literature, nonetheless!

Diane & Todd, you guys rock for making it happen so well. I’ll get there on the 2nd try. Just watch! With pumps and all on!!

Ladies, this is a super simple and very healthy dish to prepare. I love it because of of the freshness and the secret ingredient I added: honey!! It creates such a nice juxtaposition to the heat! You need little skill to prepare this. Impress the guy with it. It’s such a pretty dish too–I promise he’ll be talking about you the next day… And guys, you too…get them hands wet and cook a bit for your lady. Show her you appreciate her for putting up with your inexplicable man ways! She’ll forgive you! 🙂

And I heard the flan kicked butt.


My girl Lys over at Cooking in Stilettos is so awesome and though we’ve never met in person, she’s so genuine and excitedly supports my projects. This time, she nominated Flanboyant Eats for the best food blog for the 2008 Bloggers Choice Awards! Make your way over to this site and cast your vote for me! I’d love you for it and if I could send you a flan, I would!

2nd, my incredible, faithful and extremely talented web designer just won 1st Place in a National Competition for Web Design, based on his design of my annual Artist & Designer Charity Event site. I’m so so proud of Joey and truly thankful for his hard work into all 4 of my sites.





Eat well, love unapologetically, pray with true intention, and take care of yourself.

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Don't forget to check out my debut cookbook!



  • 1/2 lb. sea scallops
  • 1 1/2 c. fresh cilantro, chopped & parted
  • 1 mango, chopped, parted in two
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 4 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/8″ square of butter
  • 3 tbsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. ground red pepper
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 squeeze of fresh lemon, optional


Rinse scallops and pat dry with paper towel. Season with salt, pepper and ground red pepper. Set aside. In small bowl, mix red bell pepper and 1/4 amount of cilantro. Heat olive oil and add butter. Turn heat down to medium. Without allowing butter to burn, add honey. Stir slowly. Add scallops. Cook on each side for 90 seconds. Do not mess with them while they’re searing. While scallops are cooking, layer cilantro and 3/4 amount of mango on your serving dishes. Transfer scallops onto serving plate. Top and garnish with cilantro, red bell pepper mix and remaining mango. Squeeze lemon over-top if desired.

Serves 2-3.

75 thoughts on “Spicy Seared Scallops W/ Mango & Cilantro Relish

  1. Bren, this recipe looks amazing, I have never tried scallops… I plan to try this recipe as soon as I get them 🙂
    Hey, I was looking at your photos and on the picture from Eiffel tower, you looks like my daughter, the only difference is that she is twenty something years younger!! 😉

  2. MMM…I love nicely cooked scallops and the flavors of this recipe sound amazing.

    I don’t know if I’ll ever be graceful enough to be filmed while cooking. I’m a bit of a mess in the kitchen!!

  3. Nice video work, how’s the finger? Gotta say, not a scallop fan, they freak me out. But you’ve sold me with spicy, mango and cilantro. I might even eat one of those scallops!

  4. how frustrating is it to go to the store and find not one ripe avocado. this happens to me all the time and i get SO annoyed. if it happened when i had to cook for a ‘power couple’ in 5 hours, i’d be sh*tting it. good job for ‘makin’ it work’! i use tim gunn’s line all the time with my students! ha!

    great sear on the scallops!

  5. Noble Pig: Thanks; I think they were great! The guys tore them up!

    C & V: Let me know if you try them. I think you’ll like them.

    Sharon: Filming is fun; but those goofs are now funny to me. I need to tighten up!

    Jenn: Thanks, girlie!

    Courtney: Make ’em!

    Nick: That’s an old vid. The scallop cooking one will be up today. Freak you out? There are worse things to be freaked out by! Hmmm.

    Susan: I know it’s great, right. Another good one is salmon. Thanks for the comment.

    Amy: Girl, I’m telling you, I was so through.. I swear..$4?? What? Since when? I was so glad I pulled it off, and well!

  6. Thanks for visiting my site! These scallops look terrific, and I thoroughly enjoyed the story that went with them. Great job pulling it off!

  7. First visit to your blog and I’m so happy I’m here! I traveled to Cuba only once, 12 years ago, and one of my favorite memories had to do with food. Looking forward to learning more from you!

  8. Bren,

    I made it!! Michael and Dwayne loved it! I changed recipe a little bit, I cooked also coriander and pepper in the pan with scallops, and then added mango at the end. I will be definitely doing something similar again with prawns or fish… I never cooked before with mango, now when I have still 2 left in the box, I will be experimenting with it today 🙂

    Have a wonderful day, Margot

  9. Hi Bren,

    Wanted to stop by and let you know I received the tamarind chutney today! Thanks so much. 🙂 I’ll let you know what I make with it.

  10. I have had scallops a few times lately and thinking about this combination of mango and cilantro sounds amazing. Thanks for introducting me to your blog, great recipes and nice photos.

  11. You are indeed superwoman 🙂 I don’t think I could’ve done it in such short notice, I tend to panic and start throwing things around under pressure, Hehehe

    Great pictures! 🙂

  12. Bren…

    That was incredible! Those scallops practically leap off the page, they look so good. My special someone will know exactly where I got this recipe, but I don’t care…I’m making this for him soon! I love the clip and the blog. Keep writing and cooking! xoxo

  13. Steamy Kitchen: Its my fave recipe to offer this summer!

    Paula: Thanks so much! You know I’ll be back!

    Lydia: It’s a lovely place, isn’t it! Can’t wait to go back.

    Rosa: Sure is, and the colors def. match the flavor!

    Lifeinrecipes: let me know if you try it!

    Margot: I’m so glad you made it girl! And that the fam enjoyed. Your version sounds good too!!!

    Sharon: great! Let me know what you make!

    Tracy:Thanks Tracy! I hope you’ll be back!

    Ben: I like that: start throwing things around. Que comico! I do too, but only in my own kitchen. Imagine doing that in front of the client! lol!

    Chanel: Have you made it yet!!!? Get to it! Does he even cook!

    Courtney: Thanks woman. You know how we do!

    Kevin: Make ’em!

  14. Wow I love the look and feel of your blog.  Simply stunning!  I would so love to have this dish right now.  The sweetness and tenderness of the mango scallop combo is making me really excited, I have to go out to the shops this instant!

  15. Was googling for a recipe for scallops and mango and found this. Just finished and it was awesome! Definately a keeper, thank you!

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