Yep, that's what I said!
Having tormented you all with the
of our menu board showing this incredible meal, I am now giving you the all important recipe.
I really don't feel comfortable bragging about my own cooking. Maybe it is an Australianism, but I tend to be pretty self-deprecating and every time I say something positive about a recipe, its after deleting something more like "give it a go, its not too bad". I have managed to rationalise it though, because I am praising the food, and the combination of flavours and textures, not praising the cook herself.
But this meal, I got a big head about. It was awesome. Really. I did the thing you're not meant to do, I ate it whilst babbling on about how good it was (not with a mouthful don't worry, I was able to maintain some standards!). But I was genuinely miserable as I got to the end of my meal because I knew there was no seconds in the pan, this was it, it would soon be over.
Lets just get straight to the recipe, because it's quite lengthy. Its the longest I have prepared a meal for in a while, but it was worth the effort, it was restaurant-quality! It was from my newest Gluten Free cookbook,
, which, in itself is a great read and has some really sweet stories about their relationship with each other and with food. I love Mr M ever so much, but, oh to be married to a chef.....I digress...
4 slices bacon
8oz butter softened (1 cup)
1 T thinly sliced garlic
2 T finely chopped fresh chives
1 t finely chopped fresh rosemary
a) Chop the bacon into small cubes and sauté in a large pan until crisp but not burnt, which takes around 7-10 minutes. Allow to cool.
4 slices bacon
1 medium onion
1 t finely chopped fresh thyme (I used rosemary instead)
1 T finely chopped garlic
4 large russet potatoes
½ t salt and cracked black pepper
2 cups reduced chicken stock
12 large scallops (with or without the roe, its a personal choice)
3 T salt
6 T canola oil, or another frying oil such as sunflower
3 T unsalted butter
1. Bacon Butter
b) Place the softened butter, chopped herbs, garlic and the bacon into a food processor. Beat them until they are well combined. The chives do turn the butter a slight green colour, but its not offensive so don’t panic!
c) Scoop the bacon butter out of the food processor and place onto parchment paper. Roll it into a log and refrigerate for later use.
2. Boulangarie Potatoes
a) Preheat the oven to 375F/190C
b) Saute the bacon in a hot pan. As the bacon begins to crisp up, lower the heat and add the onion. Cook until the onion is translucent and the bacon crispy (10 minutes or so). Add the thyme (or rosemary) and garlic, and stir for two minutes.
c) Remove from heat and prepare the potatoes.
d) Cut the potatoes in half lengthwise (from top to bottom) and then cut them into 1/2 inch-thick slices.
e) Spread the onion and bacon mixture into a baking dish.
f) Layer the potatoes in long lines, overlapping like fallen dominoes.
g) Season with salt and pepper
h) Cover the potatoes with reduced chicken stock (which I made simply using 2 cups of boiling water and 1 chicken stock cube, boiled for ten minutes until it had reduced by more than half).
i) Cover with aluminium foil (I forgot to do this, so mine were quite a bit crunchy, which I actually liked a lot) and bake for about an hour.
a) Pat the scallops dry with paper towel. You want them to be very dry as they cook better this way. Season with salt on one side.
b) Pour 2 T of oil in a pan and when it is starting to smoke, add 1 t of butter and stir.
c) Place half the scallops in the butter and oil and sear until the bottoms have turned a rich caramel colour and have formed a crust. This will take about 2 minutes.
d) Flip over the scallops and let them sit for 1 minute and then remove to a plate to rest.
e) Cook the remaining scallops in the same way. Mine spat a lot of oil around my kitchen, which I suspect it because I didn’t dry them well enough between the scallop and roe, so be quite meticulous! I didn't want to get oil on my camera, so don't have any photos of the scallops cooking sorry.
To serve, line the potatoes on the plate, place the scallops nearby, and dot some bacon butter on each scallop and allow it to melt as you eat it.
This meal was a lot of preparation but the flavours were incredible. The bacon butter was out of this world. The scallops, cooked to perfection. The potatoes were a surprise too! I was a bit sceptical about the chicken stock, but it was delicious and salty and creamy oh my! If you enjoy scallops and bacon separately, then you will LOVE them together in this form, they are heaven.
But, you know, give them a go, they aren't bad.....