Diver-picked Scallops with Cauliflower Puree and Caper and Raisin Sauce

For a luxurious seafood starter try prime scallops atop with a delicate cauliflower puree
Diver-picked Scallops with Cauliflower Puree and Caper and Raisin Sauce
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Effort: medium



  • 4 extra-large diver-picked king scallops, in their shells
  • 1/2 medium cauliflower
  • 100 ml full-fat milk
  • black pepper
  • icing sugar, for dusting
  • 70 ml double cream
  • 10 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 25 g butter
  • 25 g shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 bouquet garni
  • 25 g mushrooms, (ideally Paris)sliced
  • a few sprigs of flat leaf parsley, leaves picked, stalks reserved
  • 35 ml dry Alsace white wine
  • 40 g unsalted butter
  • 30 g sultanas and raisins, soaked
  • 2 tbsp capers, drained
  • 1 tbsp groundnut oil


1. Prise open the scallop shells using an ordinary table knife. Separate the scallop from the roe and remove and reserve the beard. Do not wash the scallops as diver-picked scallops contain no sand.

2. Slice the cauliflower florets finely into thin slices, resembling small white trees, reserving any trimmings. Dust the slices liberally with icing sugar.

3. Boil the reserved cauliflower stalks and trimmings in the milk, adding water if required and seasoning with salt, until tender. Strain the cauliflower and shake dry.

4. Blend the boiled cauliflower with 50ml of double cream to a puree. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.

5. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a frying pan. Fry the icing sugar-dusted cauliflower slices until golden on both sides. Remove and keep warm.

6. In a separate frying pan, heat the butter gently with the reserved scallop beards, shallots, bouquet garni, mushrooms and parsley stalks until the shallot is softened, around 5 minutes.

7. Add the white wine and remaining cream and bring to the boil. Whisk in the unsalted butter and season with salt and freshly ground pepper. Strain the sauce and mix in the drained sultanas, raisins and capers.

8. Heat the groundnut oil in a heavy-based frying pan. Pat dry the scallops and cook quickly in the pan.

9. Divide the cauliflower puree among 4 plates and top with the pan-fried scallops. Drizzle the caper sauce around and decorate with the fried cauliflower slices. Decorate with flat-leafed parsley leaves and serve.

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