Saturday, September 29, 2007

Sea Scallops and Escolar with Gin Sauce

Pan Seared Scallops.JPG
Pan Seared Sea Scallops over Smoked Bacon and Turnip Puree with Mustard Greens Oil and Dill

Earlier today I had a menu planned around beef, but after visiting our favorite fish monger everything changed. Once I saw that they had fresh escolar, it was all over. I cannot pass up the rich meaty-flavor of escolar: particularly when sushi grade is available. Oh, and while there, I picked up a few fresh sea scallops just for fun.

Pan Seared Escolar.JPG
Pan Seared Escolar Over Braised Mustard Greens. Served with Green Olives and Gin Sauce.

Usually, we simply slice off a few thin pieces of raw escolar, serve it with rice, a squeeze of lime and a touch of soy sauce. But, today I needed to get rid of the mustard greens in our garden because it was snowing. Yes, SNOWING, in September!! So, I figured I could use the spicy mustard greens as a base, and about halfway through, I realized that I had enough to make an oil from the mustard greens. What can I say, I love making colorful oils...after all, we eat with our eyes first!

Here is how it all came together (or so I remember after a few bottles of wine)

Turnip Puree:
1 Turnip
2 Tbsp butter
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

Cut turnip in half. Slice halves into 1/8-inch thick pieces. Add turnip slices into boiling salted water. Cook until tender (about 15 minutes). Drain through colander. Place turnip in food processor and add butter and whipping cream. Blend until smooth.

Pan Seared Sea Scallops:
4 Sea Scallops
2 strips of smoked bacon (used in recipe for braised mustard greens)
Salt and pepper to taste
2 Tbsp canola oil
Mustard Greens Oil, as garnish (see following recipe)
Fresh Dill as garnish

Remove muscle from scallop. Pat dry with paper towel; sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper. Heat canola oil in skillet over medium-high heat. When oil begins to shimmer add scallops and cook for 5 minutes, turning half-way through.

Mustard Greens Oil:
4 cups (or so) of fresh mustard greens, trimmed and chopped
1 cup canola oil (or olive oil)

Boil salted water in medium sauce pan. Blanch mustard greens for about 1 minute. Remove from boiling and place in ice bath. Strain and squeeze water from greens. Place strained greens in blender. Add oil and blend for about a minute. Strain through cheese cloth. Refrigerate and store in a squeeze bottle (lasts for about 2 weeks).

Plate scallops over turnip puree and bacon (from braised mustard greens recipe) and garnish with Mustard Greens Oil.

Pan Seared Escolar & Braised Mustard Greens:
1/3 lb Sushi-grade Escolar
4 cups Mustard Greens, trimmed and cut into 3-inch squares
4 cups Chicken Stock (total)
2 slices of thick-cut bacon
2 Tbsp butter
1 shallot diced
1 Star of Anise
1 sprig of rosemary
1 sprig of fresh thyme
4 Tbsp Gin
2 cloves of sliced garlic
2 Tbsp canola oil
Sliced green olives
2 garlic cloves sliced

Braised Mustard Greens:
Heat saute pan over medium-high heat. Add bacon and cook until fat is rendered (about 5 minutes). Set bacon aside for scallops (see recipe above). Add mustard greens and garlic, cook until greens start to wilt. Add 2 cups of chicken stock. Cover and cook over low heat for about twenty minutes, until tender.

Gin Sauce:
Heat 2 Tbsp of butter over medium heat in a sauce pan. Add shallot and cook until aromatic and tender (about 5 minutes). Remove pan from heat and add Gin (if Gin bursts into flames when placed over heat, just let alcohol burn-off, about 30 seconds). Add rosemary, thyme, star anise and remainder of chicken stock (2 cups). Cook until reduced by 3/4, or until proper consistency. Add butter and whisk to add sheen. Set aside off-heat.

Pan Seared Escolar:
Heat 2 Tbsp canola oil over medium-high heat in a saute pan. Add escolar when oil begins to shimmer and cook for about 2 minutes. Flip and cook another two minutes.

Plate escolar over braised mustard greens, and spoon gin sauce over top. Garnish with sliced green olives. Serve with a bottle (or two) of Oregon Pinot Noir.


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Blogger Kalyn said...

Looks like a lovely meal and it sounds like I need to check out Aquarius Fish Co.

7:52 AM  

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