When it comes to starters for a dinner party or a lovely light summers evening meal then look no further than Scallops or are they Scollops? Same thing lol
Michelle and I had some friends around for dinner and I wanted to have a light but delicious menu as the summer temperature was in the late 20's and I wanted to pair it with some good wine pairings, for this reason I started the meal with scallops two ways a chilli and garlic oil and a pea puree.
It was amazing and a perfect way to start off as it was light, packed with flavour and textures and buzzing with a number of combinations for the pallet.
What's on the shopping list:
* 1 red chilli medium hot
* 1 lemon (Half cut into wedges for the finished dish, half for adding while cooking)
* Salt (I only use Himalayan pink salt)
* Cracked black pepper
* Peas (I used frozen peas as they are a great product)
* Pea shoots
* Chopped Parsley
* 4 Scallops
* Olive oil
* Black pudding
* Bacon lardon's
What can you expect, well just check out the below picture:
Lets get cooking:
1. Cut the chilli and garlic into slices 2 mm thick and finely chop some parsley. Gently heat about 4 to 5 table spoons of extra virgin olive oil in a pan, you want a low heat or the oil starts to burn and change flavour. Once the oil has heated add the chilli and garlic allowing it to slowly infuse with the oil, cook this slowly for about 5 to 8 minutes the garlic and chilli should not colour. Lastly add your chopped parsley and cook for another minute.
You can either prepare this in advance and reheat or cook real time its really your choice.
2. Cook a cup of peas in salted boiling water. I a blender or Nutrabullet add 5 mint leafs, a squeeze of lemon, pepper, salt the peas and about 4 table spoons of the cooking water to thin the puree. Blend until smooth and then ad a dash of single cream to the puree for that creamy flavour and look. Again this only take 5 or 6 minutes to make so you can do it before hand or make it while you cook the scallops.
** With steps 1 and 2 I tend to make them during the day or before hand as they only take seconds to re heat **
** Steps 3 and 4 need to be done together so as one or the other do not get cold **
3. Cub up the black pudding and 2 of the scallops. Heat a small amount of oil in a pan and start to cook off the bacon lardons (I use smoked bacon for extra flavour). Once they start to colour add the black pudding pieces and cook for another 2 minute and lastly add the chopped scallops and cook for 2 more minutes before adding a few grinds of black pepper a pinch of salt and a good squeeze of lemon juice to finish.
4. Add a very small amount of oil to a pan and cook the scallops on a medium high heat for 4 to 5 minutes they will brown quickly, flip the scallop and heat on the other side for 1 to 1 ½ minutes when plating this up put the brown side up.
** Once I have cooked steps 3 and 4 I use the same pans to cook steps 1 and 2, put the oil in the black pudding pan after a quick wipe clean and the pea puree in the whole scallop pan after a quick wipe (Saves washing up and the stress of juggling 4 pans) **
5. To plate up I smear the pea puree on a white plate before placing the whole scallop on top. I then scatter the pieces around the plate and drizzle with the chilli garlic oil and finally add the pea shoots to finish.
This is a simple but delicious dish and anyone you serve it to will love it to bits I have no doubt!
What to pair this delight with I hear you ask well a fine crisp Sancerre doesn't go amiss:
A crisp white is the perfect bed fellow for s scallop dish and a Sancerre is totally the right wine to go for.
Crisp, citrus and refreshing but not over powering in any way, this wine will handle the black pudding and bacon but complement the chilli and help to bring the dish together perfectly.
This dish showcases a home chef who knows their product and also understands their wine, your guests will be happy, you will be happy and most of all ever ones tummy and palates will be over the moon.
Go and buy the ingredients, get cooking and send me your pictures and comments of how you got on.
The Sartorial Yeti xxx