XO scallop and sugar-snap stir-fry

XO scallop and sugar-snap stir-fry

The Real Food of China
Leanne Kitchen

XO sauce is a relatively recent invention. It was created during the 1960s in Hong Kong and today is used there and in neighbouring Guangdong. Recipes for it abound, but it is essentially a mix of chopped and dried seafoods, cured pork, chilli, garlic and oil. Ours takes a bit of effort to make, but it is utterly delicious. Add it to noodle dishes and stir-fries, as here, or serve it with simply cooked seafood as a condiment on the side.


Quantity Ingredient
500g scallops, roe intact
125ml XO sauce
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
2 1/2 tablespoons shaoxing rice wine
80ml peanut oil
400g sugarsnap peas, trimmed
2 garlic cloves, crushed


  1. Place the scallops in a single layer on several layers of paper towel, then place several layers of paper towel on top and gently press to absorb the excess liquid.
  2. Put the XO sauce, soy sauce and rice wine in a small bowl and stir to combine well. Set aside.
  3. Heat half of the oil in a wok over a medium heat, then add the sugar-snap peas and stir-fry for 2–3 minutes, or until tender but still a little crisp. Remove to a plate. Return the wok to a high heat, add the remaining oil, then add the scallops and garlic and stir-fry for about 3 minutes, or until the scallops are nearly cooked through. Add the XO sauce mixture, return the sugar-snap peas to the wok, then toss for 30 seconds, or until everything is heated through and the scallops are cooked. Serve immediately.
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