Double-dived scallops, burnt aubergine purée, pork belly and fermented grains

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This beautiful surf and turf scallop starter recipe from Scott Davies pairs seaweed-roasted scallops with pork belly and fermented grains for a celebration of the best of Skye produce. Though the elements are fairly simple, the dish requires some preparation in advance so make sure you get organised beforehand.

First published in 2017





Fermented grains

  • 25g of spelt
  • 25g of pearl barley
  • 25g of rye
  • 100ml of water
  • 80ml of buttermilk
  • 30g of apple vinegar
  • 200ml of white chicken stock

Pork belly

Yoghurt curd

Burnt aubergine purée

To serve


  • Water bath
  • Large vacuum bags
  • Chamber sealer
  • Blowtorch
  • Muslin cloth
  • 2 squeezy bottles 2
  • Food processor or blender


To make the fermented grains, mix the spelt, pearl barley, rye, water, 30g of the buttermilk and the apple vinegar together and place in a jar. Seal and leave at room temperature for 24 hours
  • 25g of spelt
  • 25g of pearl barley
  • 30ml of buttermilk, plus an extra 50ml
  • 30g of apple vinegar
  • 25g of rye
  • 100ml of water
Remove the grains from the jar and rinse under cold running water. Place the grains in a pan with the chicken stock and boil for 20 minutes, or until just tender. Remove from the heat, season with salt and stir in the extra 50g buttermilk
  • 200ml of white chicken stock
  • 50ml of buttermilk
Next make a brine for the pork belly. Place the water, honey, thyme, bay, peppercorns and salt in a pan and boil for 1 minute. Remove from the heat, leave to cool then cover the pork belly in the cold brine and refrigerate for 24 hours
Preheat a water bath to 85°C
Wash the pork belly under cold running water and place in a vacuum bag with the melted pork fat. Seal with a chamber sealer and place in the preheated water bath for 12 hours
  • 100g of pork fat, melted
After this time, remove from the water bath, place in a fresh bag and re-seal. Place between 2 heavy trays, top with weights and refrigerate for minimum of 2 hours, until cold and firm
To make the yoghurt curd, mix together the salt and the yoghurt and hang in a muslin cloth in the fridge for 6 hours, allowing the curds to form in the bag and the whey to collect in a bowl beneath it. Remove the curds from the cloth and transfer to a clean container. Keep the whey and curd separately (you will use the whey for the scallops)
To make the burnt aubergine purée, lightly score the aubergine with the point of a sharp knife, just breaking the skin. Set up a barbecue with charcoal and roast the aubergine for 20 minutes, or until blackened and soft. Alternatively, you can blacken the aubergine directly on a gas hob flame
Preheat the oven to 170°C/gas mark 3.5
Break up the cooked aubergine, season with salt and roast on a tray in the oven for 20 minutes. Transfer to a blender and blend with the malt extract and balsamic vinegar. Pass through a fine sieve and set aside until required
  • salt
  • 1 tbsp of balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp of malt extract
When ready to serve, cut the pork belly into a small dice, place on a tray and lightly crisp the surface with a blowtorch. Set aside until ready to serve
To cook the scallops, season each side lightly with sea salt and roast in a hot pan, or on a plancha, on the flat side for 1 minute. Flip over and cook for a further 30 seconds. Remove from the heat, brush with the reserved whey and sprinkle with dulse seaweed flakes and a little salt
To plate, transfer the aubergine purée and yoghurt curd to separate squeezy bottles. Sit the scallop on a spoonful of fermented grains and garnish with the pork belly cubes, dots of purée and curd and fresh wood sorrel leaves

Having worked all over Scotland, Scott Davies took root at the prestigious Three Chimneys, where his clean, Nordic techniques are a perfect fit for Skye’s incredible larder.

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