Scotland has an abundance of world-class shellfish. The scallops found in Scottish water are always of an outstanding quality with a mild, sweet flavour.
The recipe that I am sharing this week has been on the menu at the restaurant for the last eight months. It has become a firm favourite with guests and as a result I have been asked to share the recipe on numerous occasions!
The dish itself adds a sense of theatre to any celebration with guests invited to cook one of the scallops at the table by pouring over a hot dashi broth.
When purchasing scallops, I recommend giving your local fishmonger a visit.
Look for plump, firm, moist scallops which have a fresh seawater aroma. Some suppliers soak them in brine, as the scallop acts like a sponge and increases in weight. This can affect the flavour and so I would suggest avoiding any which are bright white in colour and swollen as these have usually been soaked. Your fishmonger can also assist in the preparation of the scallops.
You will often notice that two types of scallops are available; dredged or hand dived. Dredging can cause damage to sea life and therefore I always recommend and buy hand-dived scallops here at the restaurant.
For the scallops
A drizzle of rapeseed oil
Sea vegetables, picked (your fishmonger should be able to supply these)
For the dashi broth
85ml red miso
85ml white miso
1 litre water
75g ginger, skin on and sliced
1 stick of lemongrass
Half a red chilli, finely sliced
1 clove of garlic, peeled and finely sliced
1 bunch of coriander
Soy sauce to season
Remove the scallops from the shell and wash thoroughly removing all of the skirt and roe (I recommend getting your fishmonger to do this part for you).
Wash the shells and dry well.
Finely dice 4 of the scallops and place into 4 of the clean shells with the sea vegetables.
To make the dashi broth, simmer all of the ingredients excluding the soy sauce for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat up a non-stick frying pan with a drizzle of rapeseed oil and place the remaining 4 scallops gently in it.
Cook for 2 minutes. Turn the scallop over and cook for a further 2 minutes and then season with a little salt.
Pull the scallop pan off the heat and rest for about 2 minutes.
Pass the dashi broth through a muslin cloth. Season the broth with a little soy sauce.
Place a pan-roasted scallop on each plate alongside the shell containing the raw scallop.
Each guest should be served a raw scallop, a cooked scallop and a jug of piping hot dashi broth
Instruct your guests to pour the dashi broth over the raw scallop and eat the pan roasted one while the other cooks.