Roasted scallop with pickled carrots, nasturtiums and shellfish sauce

A big, fat, hand-dived scallop is always going to bring star quality to any dish, but it's often what it's served with that takes its flavours from good to great. In this recipe, Patrick Powell serves the best scallops he can find with pickled carrots, herbaceous nasturtium and a rich, glossy sauce made from langoustine shells.

First published in 2021
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Ingredients

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Imperial

Pickled carrots

  • 100g of rice wine vinegar
  • 50g of water
  • 2.5g of salt
  • 60g of mint, stalks only
  • 2 large carrots, 1 orange and 1 purple

Nasturtium oil

Shellfish sauce

Scallops

Equipment

  • Thermomix or blender
  • Fine sieve
  • Parisian scoop / melon baller
  • Vacuum bag and machine
  • Hand blender with frothing attachment

Method

1

Begin by pickling the carrots as they take 48 hours. Bring the vinegar, water, sugar and salt to the boil then pour the liquor over the mint stalks and leave to infuse for 24 hours

  • 100g of rice wine vinegar
  • 50g of water
  • 2.5g of salt
  • 60g of mint, stalks only
2

Strain the stalks out of the pickling liquor. Use a very small parisian scoop to make 1-2cm balls out of both carrots (keeping the colours separate). Slice and reserve the leftover carrots for the shellfish sauce

3

Place the carrot balls in separate vacuum bags with some of the pickle liquor then vacuum seal and leave to pickle for 24 hours. You could also simply submerge the balls in separate bowls of the liquor, but the flavour won’t be as strong

4

Next, make the oil. Blanch the spinach and nasturtium leaves in boiling water for 30 seconds, then drain and refresh in iced water. Squeeze dry and roughly chop before adding to a Thermomix with the oil. Set to 90°C for 9 minutes, blending on the highest speed for 1 minute, then scraping down the sides and blending on speed 3 for the remaining 8 minutes. If you don't have a Thermomix, blitz in a regular blender until smooth and bright green. Pass through a fine sieve, discard the pulp and chill

5

To make the shellfish sauce, add the oil and 25g of the butter to a large pan and once hot, add the spices, vegetables and shell pieces. Cook until golden and caramelised

6

Deglaze the pan with the white wine and brandy, then once it has mostly reduced, add the chicken stock and simmer for 1 hour on a low heat

  • 150ml of white wine
  • 60ml of brandy
  • 750ml of chicken stock
7

Pass through a fine sieve into a clean pan and reduce the liquid by half, then add the reduced carrot juice and cream. Add the butter one cube at a time to emulsify the liquid into a nice glossy sauce. Taste and season with salt

  • 1l carrot juice, reduced to 500ml
  • 250g of double cream
  • 1 Maldon salt
8

Carefully shuck and remove the skirt & roe from the scallop (if needed – the fishmonger may have already done this for you). Bring the scallops to room temperature before cooking

9

Add the grapeseed oil to a nonstick frying pan and when beginning to smoke add the scallops flat-side down and cook until golden (about 2-4 minutes depending on the size). Add the butter and, once melted and foaming, flip over the scallops and baste. Season with salt then remove from the pan

10

Place a scallop in the centre of each bowl with a few of the pickled carrots to one side. Froth the warm sauce with a hand blender and pour alongside the scallop. Split the sauce with some drops of the nasturtium oil and garnish with a few small nasturtium leaves

First published in 2021
share recipe:

After spending four years running the kitchen at the renowned Chiltern Firehouse, Irish chef Patrick Powell was given the opportunity to open his debut restaurant Allegra in Stratford, where he serves seasonal British fare in an impressive space which he himself helped design.

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