Raw scallops, celeriac broth and green chilli

Raw scallops, celeriac broth and green chilli

By
From
Everyday Seafood
Serves
4 as a starter

Raw scallops always go down well when we serve them in the restaurants so I wanted to share a favourite recipe of mine here. Prepare it during the autumn and winter, when celeriac is at its best. I make a stock and a pickle from the celeriac and finish the dish with celeriac crisps and a drizzle of chilli oil.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
12 very fresh scallops, shelled, cleaned and roes removed

For the celeriac broth

Quantity Ingredient
1 large celeriac, peeled and diced
or 2 small celeriac, peeled and diced
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
a good squeeze lemon juice
sea salt

For the celeriac pickle

Quantity Ingredient
1/2 celeriac, peeled and cut into matchsticks
75ml cider
75ml cider vinegar
75ml water
75g caster sugar
a small handful coriander, leaves picked and chopped

For the celeriac crisps

Quantity Ingredient
1/2 celeriac, peeled
sunflower oil, for deep-frying

For the green chilli oil

Quantity Ingredient
30g coriander, leaves picked
300ml light olive oil
2 green chillies, chopped, (seeds left in)

To finish

Quantity Ingredient
1-2 green chillies, deseeded and finely chopped

Method

  1. First make the chilli oil. Add the coriander to a pan of boiling salted water and blanch for 30 seconds, then lift out and plunge into a bowl of cold water to refresh. Drain and squeeze out the excess water, then place in a blender. Add the olive oil and chillies and blitz thoroughly. Pour into a container and place in the fridge for 24 hours. Decant just before serving.
  2. For the broth, weigh the diced celeriac and note the weight. Heat a pan (large enough to hold the celeriac comfortably) and add the olive oil. Add the celeriac and cook over a medium heat until caramelised all over, at least 20 minutes. Add the same volume of water as the weight of the celeriac and bring to the boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
  3. Strain the liquid into a clean pan. (Save the celeriac for a stew or mash with your next meal.) Bring the liquor to a simmer and let bubble until reduced to about 150 ml; it should be a lovely golden brown colour. Strain again and allow to cool. Cover and refrigerate until required.
  4. For the pickle, put the celeriac matchsticks into a bowl. Heat the cider, vinegar, water, sugar and a pinch of salt in a small pan to dissolve the sugar and bring to the boil. Pour over the celeriac, cover and let cool.
  5. For the crisps, finely slice the celeriac, using a mandoline, if you have one. Heat the oil in a deep-fat fryer or other suitable deep, heavy pan to 150°C. Line a tray with kitchen paper. Fry the celeriac slices in batches, as necessary: lower into the hot oil and fry until golden all over. Remove with a strainer, drain on the kitchen paper and sprinkle with sea salt. Allow to cool.
  6. To assemble, drain the pickled celeriac and toss the chopped coriander through it. On a clean board with a sharp knife, slice the scallops in half horizontally and season with a little salt.
  7. Share the scallops and celeriac between 4 warmed shallow bowls. Gently warm the broth in a pan and add salt and lemon juice to taste. Divide equally between the bowls and finish with a drizzle of chilli oil and a sprinkling of chillies. Serve at once, garnished with the celeriac crisps.
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