Shrimp and Scallops with Asian Eggplant
- 4 scallions
- 1 pound large shrimp (about 24), shelled and deveined
- 1 pound sea scallops, tough muscles removed
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil (plus 2 tablespoons, if necessary)
- 2 1/2 pounds (about 4 or 5) Asian eggplants, halved lengthwise and cut diagonally into 1/2-inch-thick slices
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon Asian chile paste
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves
- 2 tablespoons small fresh basil leaves
Cut scallion greens into 1-inch lengths, reserving white parts for another use. Pat seafood dry and season with salt and pepper. Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then stir-fry eggplant with salt and pepper until golden brown on both sides and cooked through (add 3 tablespoons more oil if eggplant is sticking to skillet). Transfer eggplant to a plate as cooked and keep warm, covered.
Add 2 tablespoons oil to skillet and sear shrimp and scallops in batches, without crowding, until just cooked through, about 4 minutes. Add more oil to skillet if necessary. Transfer to plate and keep warm, covered.
Cooks' note: Eggplant is a sponge for oil. Don't add more oil, even if skillet looks dry, unless eggplant sticks.