Seared Scallop with Truffles
This dish was inspired by several appetizer recipes I have seen featuring Grilled Scallops served on a bed of pureed Parsnip. I am not sure how well they actually pair together (not having tried it), but I have taken the basic idea and used potato with scallion as a ‘bed’ and added a little decadent flourish in the form of sliced Black Truffle. I have only used two large Scallops here, making the result suitable as an appetizer for two, or even just one, but you can certainly multiply the amounts for a larger dinner party.
The Truffles I am using here are an Italian variety preserved in oil. They aren’t exactly cheap, but these ones weren’t horribly expensive either. You could, I suppose, go whole hog and get the very special White Truffle but it will cost you a bomb and, actually, I think the Black type has a much better visual appeal for this recipe.
Here is one of the aforementioned Truffles cut to show the interiors. The hard, black rind needs to be trimmed off before use. The Recipe Card below calls for four slices (two for each Scallop), but you can increase the amount if you like. It might even be a nice effect to cut the Truffle slices into strips and create a nice lattice design over the Scallops.
First, boil and mash your potato and season it with a little salt and pepper. Whip to a smooth puree with the cream, and then stir in the chopped scallion.
Add a little oil to a pan heated over a moderately hot flame and season your scallops with a little salt and pepper. Sear them quickly on each side until nicely golden and then set aside. The idea here is to sear at sufficiently high heat to produce a slight crust on the surfaces, and do so quickly enough that the center is still soft and very slightly translucent.
Take note of the brown ‘’fond’ on the bottom of the pan. This will be essential to the production of a great pan-sauce in a few moments.
The next step is to make little cushions for each scallop using about 3 tablespoons of the potato mix for each. To make nice circles, I used a small can with both ends cut off. I put the mashed potato into the can and used the lid to push the mass down into a tight, circular pad.
Dust each ‘cushion’ with a little paprika and set aside for now. Ideally, you should have the plates beneath the Potato warmed so that the ‘pads’ do not cool down too much.
Put the scallop pan back on to the heat and deglaze it with the white wine. Then, add the butter and lemon juice and stir until the mixture is bubbling and slightly reduced. Stir in the parsley, reserving a pinch or so for a final garnish.
Top each potato circle with a scallop.
Finally, pour the butter sauce over the scallops and top each with the truffle slices. Sprinkle with the remaining parsley and serve.
Your Recipe Card:
Seared Scallop with Truffles
- 2 large Scallops;
- 4 slices of Black Truffle;
- 1 small Potato;
- ¼ cup finely chopped Scallion Green;
- 2 Tbsp. thick Cream;
- 5 Tbsp. Butter;
- 2 Tbsp. White Wine;
- 1 Tbsp. Lemon Juice;
- 2 Tbsp. chopped Parsley;
- 1 pinch Paprika;
- Salt and Pepper.
- Boil and mash the potato and season it with a little salt and pepper. Whip to a smooth puree with the cream, and then stir in the chopped scallion.
- Quickly sear the scallops in a little oil to a crusty golden brown on both sides and remove from the pan.
- Form circular ‘Pads’ for each Scallop using three tablespoons or so of the mashed potato mixture, and dust each with a little Paprika.
- Deglaze the scallop pan with White Wine, then add the butter and Lemon juice and reduce slightly, adding a pinch or two of Parsley just before finishing.
- Add a Scallop to each Potato ‘Bed’, top with two Truffle slices each, and pour over the sauce. Garnish with remaining Parsley and serve hot.