A recipe from Iván Álvarez Santamaría, Executive Chef at La Cala Resort

Seared Scallops and Foie Mousse Served with Melon Soup

‘I recommend that both the soup and the Foie mousse are prepared the day before you are going to serve them, as this will allow the flavours to intensify but it also allows sufficient time for the Foie to set and for the Soup to chill’

1. Melon Soup.

Ingredients:

White sugar 200g

Water 200ml

Melon 1 full piece (2.5kg are the normal weight for our melon in Spain which is known as a Santa Claus melon.  Ogen or Cantaloupe will also be delicious.

Almonds 100gr (peeled, natural but never fried)

3 tbl.sp of Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1. You´ll need to begin by preparing a very simple sugar syrup.  You do so by adding 200ml of water and 200g of sugar into a pot and placing it over a low heat. It is very important to avoid the syrup reaching boiling temperature (100ºC) and that you continue to stir the mix until all the sugar has dissolved, it should take about 10 minutes.  Then just let it cool down to room temperature and thereafter it can be placed in the fridge.

2. Peel the melon and cut the flesh in to small pieces, saving the seeds (this is our secret and where the real flavor is to be found) and blend it together with the almonds. (We specify 100g in our recipe but you can go up to 200g if you wish for a more intense flavor).

You´ll need to blend the almonds first until they are a fine powder and then add the melon and seeds and continue until you have a paste that´s of a very smooth texture.

Add you sugar mix gradually and taste as you go.  How you much you add is really dependent on the sweetness of your melon. (Here in Spain during the summer we frequently don´t use syrup at all because our melon is so sweet).

Finally, add two or three table spoons of a very good virgin olive oil.

3. The last step is to strain the soup with a fine sieve to ensure you remove any of the fine grit remaining from the melon seeds.   Place it in the fridge and wait.  It has to be very cold when served.

 

2. Duck Foie Mousse 

100g. Fresh Foie

100g. Fresh Cream

3-4 g of “Gel Espessa” Thickener (Maltodextrin and Xantan Gum) or one Gelatin sheet

Before you clean the Foie put it in cold water for 20min then check it for veins. Remove them as necessary.  The next step is to cook it with the Fresh cream for 6-7 min at 60ºC, speed 6. (We normally use the Thermomix for this job).  As the 6th minute approaches.. add the salt and the thickening agent.

Decant it into your mould and allow it cool down in the fridge for a few hours

3. Scallops

If you have the opportunity, try and go for fresh Coquilles San Jacques and if you are successful then make sure all the sand has been removed with a thorough rinse. (The last thing you´ll want is a grainy mouthful of seafood).

Iberian Cured Ham

This is the Spanish touch! You´ll need to cut it into very thin strips and reserve them to one side for plating. (As shown in the picture no more than 20 g we´ll be required).

Green Pea Shoots

The decoration of this dish will be the Green Pea Shoots which have to be hydrated in cold water with the help of two ice cubes for a few minutes to get them really crunchy. (Don´t forget dry them with kitchen toweling).

4. Plating & Garnish

Start by placing a small pan over medium heat, once it´s good and hot add a little olive oil and sear the scallops to get a nice brown colour. Don´t forget to season the scallops first and avoid the temptation to turn them over and over.  2 minutes on each side should be more than sufficient to cook them.

While the scallops are cooking we just need to form a “quenelle” with the Foie mousse and place it in the centre of the plate.  When cooked, place the Scallops close to and around the quenelle of Foie.  Garnish by placing the strips of ham on top of the scallops, sprinkle the green pea shoots on top and finally drizzle lightly with a good virgin olive oil.

Don´t worry if you feel the Scallops are getting a little cold, our target is to serve them at room temperature rather than hot.

For vegetarians a nice variation is to get some different germinating sprouts like leek, beetroot and green pea and mix them with some fresh herbs like basil and tarragon to create a nice mini salad in the center of the bowl, add some croutons and sesame seeds and then pour the cold soup around the outside.

Find more about La Cala Resort here.

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