Stir Fried Scallops with Leeks, Chinese New Year

Happy Year of the Horse!

Tomorrow is the first day of the Chinese New Year celebration, which lasts until Feb. 17th.

I realize that many, if not most, people in the U.S. are giving more thought to the game coming up than celebrating the Year of the Horse but it’s a big event chez nous.

Not the actual holiday, but the fact that the stores are filled with Asian foods for the duration.

I learned early on to take advantage of things in their season.

I also learned that seasons are brief. On Dec. 26th I went in to a shop looking for a last minute Christmas bit…. Everything was already packed up and put away.  No after-Christmas sales here!

I digress….

For the two weeks of the Chinese New Year I can buy all sorts of wonderful foods that are not on the shelves the other 50 weeks.

I also learned to stock-up.

Here are a few favorite recipes if you feel so inclined to ring in, or out, the Year of the Horse.

Stir-Fried Scallops with Leeks

Total time: 30 minutes


  • 10oz (300gr) large scallops
  • 1 leek, cleaned, trimmed and julienned
  • 2 carrots, julienned
  • 1 rib celery, julienned
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbs minced fresh ginger
  • 1/4 cup (2oz, 60ml) dry sherry
  • 1/4 cup (2oz, 60ml) chicken broth
  • 1 tbs orange juice
  • 1 tbs soy sauce
  • 3 tsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp cornstarch (maizena) dissolved in 2 tbs water
  • 1/2 cup Basmati rice
  • 1 cup chicken broth

Scallop and Leek Stir Fry


  • Basmati rice:
  • Cook rice in chicken broth until done, app. 15 minutes.
  • Heat 2 tsp olive oil in a large skillet.
  • Add vegetables and stir-fry until just starting to get tender, 6 – 8 minutes.
  • Add soy sauce and stir-fry briefly.
  • Remove to a plate and keep warm.
  • Add remaining 1 tsp olive oil, scallops and stir-fry quickly until scallops turn opaque.
  • Add sherry, broth, juice and heat to simmering.
  • Dissolve cornstarch in water.
  • Add cornstarch mixture to skillet and until thickened, less than a minute.
  • Return vegetables to skillet and heat through,  
  • Serve over rice.

Print Recipe

Sweet and Sour Pork….. This is not the American version made with stick-sweet canned pineapple, but an authentic Chinese version.

Sweet Sour Pork

Noodles with Egg Sauce…. I used spaghetti, but cellophane noodles would be more appropriate.

Noodles with Egg Sauce

Fried Rice.… I make it with Basmati because I usually don’t have sticky rice available.

Fried Rice

Sesame Carrots….  The carrots are roll-cut to give more surface for the glaze.

Sesame Carrots

Now I have to go play….. We have guests.

4 thoughts on “Stir Fried Scallops with Leeks, Chinese New Year”

  1. Good grief did you make me hungry! And I just got done with spaghetti and meatballs. I love scallops but have never stir-fried them so I’ll have to try this one. Not that everything else doesn’t look good enough to make right now…

  2. I may well live very close to Asia but our shops are inundated with Valentines day “rubbish” and very little promo for Chinese New Year !!

  3. nightsmusic, I like them stir-fried… the soy sauce goes well with the sweet scallops.

    Kate, Valentine’s Day isn’t big here…. thankfully. I’d rather celebrate Chinese New Year.

  4. Hi there, love this. Would you like to share this with the other participants in Food on Friday over at Carole’s Chatter? I have a weekly link up party – each week there is a different ingredient or theme. The current theme is Scallops!

    You can see upcoming themes in one of the pages at the top of my home page. If you would like to join in the fun please schedule a reminder for each week. The collection starts at 7am Friday New Zealand time – which might be some time Thursday your time – aren’t time zones confusing? Well they confuse me! Hope to see you soon. Cheers, Carole

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