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Pan Seared Diver Sea Scallops Filled with Lemon Basil Mousseline, Lentil Risotto with Boudin Noir and Pecorino Romano Recipe
Pan Seared Diver Sea Scallops Filled with Lemon Basil Mousseline, Lentil Risotto with Boudin Noir and Pecorino Romano
James Overbaugh, Château de Sureau
James Overbaugh, Château de Sureau
Flavors of California
Total time: 1hr to 2hr

Preparation time: 45 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes

Difficulty: Difficult
Chef's Note

Scallops are sized by weight. The "U-10" size called for in this recipe means under 10 per pound, or very large scallops.

For 6 servings

Scallops and mousseline
- Large scallops
- 1 tsp. minced shallot
- 1 tsp. lemon zest
- A pinch of curing salt
- A pinch of Aleppo pepper (Turkish pepper)
- 1 tbsp. fresh puréed basil
- 1 egg white
- 500 ml (2 cups) heavy cream
- A pinch of cayenne, salt, white pepper

Lentil risotto
- 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tbsp. minced shallot
- 2 tbsp. minced garlic
- 125 ml (1/2 cup) arborio rice
- 250 ml (1 cup) chicken stock
- 250 ml (1 cup) cooked lentils
- 1 tbsp. unsalted butter
- 500 ml (2 cups) cauliflower, coarsely crumbled
- 60 ml (1/4 cup) boudin noir (blood sausage), skinned and chopped
- 60 ml (1/4 cup) chopped water chestnuts
- 3 tbsp. Pecorino Romano
- 2 tbsp. chopped dill
- Salt and freshly ground pepper

Saffron-vermouth broth
- 1 tsp. unsalted butter
- 1 tsp. minced shallot
- 60 ml (1/4 cup) dry white vermouth
- 1 tsp. saffron
- 2 tsp. capers
- 1 Yukon gold potato, peeled, diced and blanched
- 1 tsp. chopped fresh dill
- 500 ml (2 cups) shellfish broth
- 1 tbsp. unsalted butter
- Salt and freshly ground white pepper

Fennel garnish
- 1/2 fennel bulb, thinly sliced on a mandolin
- 1 tsp. lemon juice
- 2 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground white pepper
- 2 tbsp. grapeseed oil
- 6 sprigs of dill

Preparing the scallops and mousseline

  1. Remove the centers of the scallops with an apple corer. Reserve the outsides of scallops for filling after the mousseline is completed.
  2. Lay the scallop centers on a plastic lined pan. Sprinkle with the shallot, lemon zest and curing salt. Place in the freezer until half frozen. (Keeping the scallops very cold allows for better bonding of the proteins during the mousseline making process). Place the food processor bowl and blade in the freezer as well.
  3. When the scallops are partially frozen, take them and the food processor out of the freezer. Set up the food processor and place the scallop centers in the bowl. Add the Aleppo pepper, cayenne, salt, white pepper and basil purée. Purée completely, scraping down the sides as necessary. Blend in the egg white.
  4. Slowly add the cream with the machine running, but do not overprocess since the cream may separate and turn grainy. At the same time, it is important to process the mixture sufficiently in order to incorporate air and give the mousseline its fluffy texture.
  5. Turn off the machine and place a small amount of the mousseline into simmering water and cook it in order to test texture and seasoning. When satisfied with the results, remove the mousseline from the food processor and place in a plastic pastry bag fitted with an open tip.
  6. Pipe the scallop centers full of mousseline.

Preparing the lentil risotto

  1. In a saucepan over medium heat, sauté half the shallots and the garlic in 1 tbsp. oil until translucent.
  2. Add the Arborio rice and stir to coat the grains with oil. Add the stock (3/4-cup), one ladleful at a time, letting the rice absorb each ladleful before adding the next. Cook the rice until about 85% done. Use more or less stock as needed. Set aside.
  3. In a large wide pan, heat the remaining 1 tbsp. oil and butter. Sauté the cauliflower until fully cooked.
  4. Add the remaining shallot, boudin noir, chestnuts, salt and pepper. Add the risotto and a little more stock to finish cooking the risotto. When done, remove from the heat, stir in the cooked lentils, Pecorino Romano and chopped dill. Adjust the seasoning.

Preparing the saffron-vermouth broth

  1. Heat the butter in a small saucepan. Sweat the shallots in the butter for one minute.
  2. Add the vermouth and saffron and reduce by half.
  3. Add the capers, diced potato, dill and broth. Reduce by half. Swirl in the cold butter. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.

Preparing the fennel garnish

  1. Toss the fennel, lemon juice and olive oil together in a bowl. Season and set aside.


  1. Preheat the oven to 180° C (350° F). Heat a large sauté pan and add the grapeseed oil. Sear the scallops gently on both sides and transfer to the oven. Cook until the mousseline is done (it will be firm throughout). Remove from the oven and allow to rest 1 minute.
  2. To serve, spoon some risotto into the center of warmed appetizer bowls, using a ring mold.
  3. Spoon some broth around the risotto.
  4. Slice the scallops in half and serve 3 half slices per person. Garnish with fennel and a dill sprig and serve immediately.
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