Category Archives: Scallops

You say ‘scollops’, I say bollxxxx

I don’t know why this irritates me, but it is annoyingly an accepted variation of ‘scallop’. Scollop is also an Irish word for some kind of thatching device, so in order to avoid this traumatic confusion, let’s stick with scallop.

Continuing the theme of rediscovering Simon Hopkinson recipes, I finally allowed myself to attempt a scallop mousseline. Now, I haven’t avoided this through any technical fear. It’s just the purist in me struggles with the idea of blitzing a perfectly wonderful, gastronomically excellent entity. Likewise steak tartare, and baking really amazing cheeses. However, the fishmonger threw in an extra two handfuls of local mini-scallops, that already only cost $7 a kilo. It would be rude not to…..

So I found myself cleaning and opening about a 100 tiny bloody scallops at around 10pm one evening because I didn’t want the things to lose freshness before being pulverised. “Hi mum, yeah, fine to talk, carry on……”

Anyway, everything has to be kept COLD.

  • 200g (I had 250g) scallop white meat
  • 1 egg
  • 250ml cream (I think I upped to 300ml of 50% fat, almost clotted cream)
  • decent few grinds of  finely ground white pepper

All whizzed up in the (pre-chilled) Kenwood mixer though a food processor would be better, tipped into a chilled bowl and whisked with a chilled whisk until slightly thickened. Maybe I should have turned on the aircon…..

Simon puts his in 6 butter lined little darioles- a great word, they are wee metal conical cups by the way. I put mine in 4 glass cups with almost straight sided, covered with foil, and cooked in a bain marie type affair, filling the water in the pan to just below the level of the mixture. They seemed done when they were just firm to touch.

Meanwhile, the lobster sauce….

Well, it just happened that I had some yabbie/ prawn stock in the freezer, so I reduced this down with some

  • tomato passata
  • sherry
  • tarragon
  • cream

In some kind of appropriate quantity. Basmati rice and salad to serve as shown.

What a bizarre and wonderful creation this was, a massive hit of sheer essence of scallop, almost cep like. It screamed out a very good chardonnay, which was a McHenry Hohnen, from Margaret river.

 

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Holy Scallops

In Tasmania scallops are so ubiquitous that they make a dodgy lumo curry pie out of them. I suppose this is reminiscient of the use of oysters in blighty before they went posh. Well, a new shop at the Rapid Creek Sunday market had a bag of bivalves of some description, claiming to be scallops. $30 you say, er, maybe not, no $3- really? Well they smelt divine and looked gorgeous, sleek and very fine with almost transparent shells. They must be local, impossible to be that cheap otherwise. I must ask next time what they are called.

I’ve often cooked clams or prawns with pasta, garlic, tomatoes and chili. Well, no tomatoes and the boys are somewhat averse to chili. At the market today, amongst other things, I bought some lovely little capsicums and a bunch of squeaky spring onions at the market today. So,

  • 2 small peppers
  • 2 spring onions (including most of the green)
  • chopped, and fried in a slug of oil (you want an oily emulsion for the sauce.)

Meanwhile

  • 250g capellini pasta (3mins max)
Meanmeanwhile
  • Bag of wee scallops, washed (maybe 700g with shells, no idea…)
  • Cooked with their own juices in a covered pan. (some wine would have been nice….)

Scallop juice sieved into the veg, reduced a little,  then add the drained pasta.

The demanding guests (family) preferred the scallops de-bearded/ gutted. Personally I was too hungry and the grit was barely detectable. Maybe for polite company. I put a little toasted chili oil/ flakes on mine but not too much to destroy a very good bottle of Sauvignon Blanc from Stella Bella.