Pan-searing foods means quickly browning the food on all sides to create a crispy crust and moist interior. High heat is the key to this speedy technique.
Shrimp and scallops are ideal choices for pan-searing because they are small and cook quickly. This allows the insides to get completely done before the outsides burn from prolonged contact with high heat. Thin steaks, chops, and medallions of meat also can be pan-seared. Slower-cooking foods, such as roasts, can get the same flavor benefits from pan-searing. After browning, however, the meat needs to finish cooking by another cooking method that uses a lower temperature, such as roasting or braising.