Printer Friendly

The scallop was good enough for Botticelli's Venus...and our chef.

A livelier character than its mussel and oyster cousins, the scallop moves about by clacking its shells together like castanets. It has blue eyes--lots of them. And a pretty shape: its fan-like shell is a classic decorative motif; indeed, Venus herself found this bivalve an acceptable pedestal on which to be displayed in Botticelli's famous painting.

Another chapter in the scallop's service to human cultural history was as the emblem of pilgrims traveling through France to the shrine of St. James at Compostela, in Spain. Because the saint's name translates to Jacques in French, the scallop is known in French cookery as coquille St. Jacques--St. James's shell.

We value it, however, not so much for vivacity, good looks, or spirituality as for its sumptuous edibility. It is incomparably tender to the bite, with a flavor that is delicate, though unmistakably of the sea.

The scallop deserves an appreciatives treatment, and that is what it gets in David Kilmerhs recipe.

Scallops Kilmer 4 croissants (each about 6 in. long) 1 pound small bay scallops (or large sea scallops, cut into 1/2-in. cubes), rinsed and drained 1/2 cup dry white wine 3 tablespoons butter or margarine 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour 1 cup whipping cream White pepper 1 cup (1/4 lb.) shredded gruyere or Swiss cheese

Split croissants in half lengthwise. Place, cut side up, in a 10-by 15-inch pan. Broil 4 inches from heat until croissants are toasted; set aside on pan.

Place scallops in a 10- to 12-inch frying pan ith the wine. Over high heat, bring just to simmering. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer just until scallops are opaque throughout (cut to test), 2 to 3 minutes. With a slotted spoon, lift scallops from pan, draining well; set aside. Boil liquid in pan, uncovered, over high heat until reduced to 3/4 cup; pour into a small bowl.

Add butter to pan and melt over medium-high Heat. Stir in flour and cook until bubbly, then gradually stir in reduced scallop liquid, any liquid you can drain from scallops, and cream. Cook, stirring, until sauce boils rapidly. Remove from heat, mix in the scallops, and season to taste with white pepper. Spoon scallop mixture equally onto toasted croissants, then sprinkle evenly with cheese.

Broil 4 to 5 inches from heat until cheese is melted and bubbly, 3 to 5 minutes. Serve at once. Makes 4 servings.

Potatoes lumpy? Roast overcooked? It won't matter if your guests can look back on such appetizers as Paul Brooks' Heavenly Mushrooms. With a few rich savories like this in your repertoire, you may never need to cook an entree for company again. Dill weed and onion bring subtle flavor to the smooth, mild richness of cream cheese, while the caviar contributes some saltiness and a dainty crunch.

Heavenly Mushrooms 18 to 20 large mushrooms (about 1-1/4 lb.), each about 1-1/2 inches in diameter 3 tablespoons butter or margarine 2 tablespoons black lumpfish caviar 1 large package (8 oz.) cream cheese, at room temperature 1 teaspoon dry dill weed 2 tablespoons minced red or white onion 1/3 cup minced parsley

Rinse mushrooms well, and carefully remove stems from mushroom caps; reserve stems for another use.

Place butter in an 8- by 12-inch baking dish in the oven while oven heats to 350[deg.]. When butter is melted, remove dish from oven. Swirl mushroom caps in butter to coat evenly, then arrange caps in the dish in a single layer, cup side up.

Put caviar in a fine strainer and rinse under cold running water until water runs clear; set aside to drain well.

Beat cheese to blend with dili weed and onion; stir in caviar. Mound cheese mixture equally in mushroom caps. (If made ahead, cover and chill up to overnight.) Bake, uncovered, in a 350[deg.] oven until cheese mixture has a light brown tinge, 15 to 20 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley and serve hot. Makes 18 to 20 appetizers; allow 3 or 4 for a serving.

The spaghetti squash is a strange vegetable. Shaped like an elongated, seamless yellow football, it contains many yards of crisp yellow strands that look like spaghetti but taste like a mild winter squash. How these came to be coiled inside that inviolate shell is one of gardening's unsolved mysteries.

Like spaghetti, the strands pair agreeably with any number of sauces. Here is a mild one, with classic simplicity.

Spaghetti Squash with Egg 1 medium-size spaghetti squash (2 to 3 lb.) 1 large egg 1 tablespoon butter or margarine 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese Salt or garlic salt and pepper

Rinse squash; pat dry. With a fork, pierce shell in several places. Set squash in an 8- or 9-inch round or square pan. Bake, uncovered, in a 350 [deg.] oven until shell gives when squeezed, 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 hours.

Meanwhile, place egg in a 3- to 4-cup pan, cover with cold water, and place over high heat until small bubbles just break the surface of the water. Reduce heat and simmer for 3 minutes. Crack egg into a small bowl; with a fork, break white into smal chunks, mixing it well with the yolk. Cut hot squash in half lengthwise; scoop out and discard seeds. With a fork, pull squash strands from the shell into a bowl. Add the butter and 2 tablespoons of the cheese; mix well. Add the egg and mix to blend thoroughly. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Offer remaining cheese to add to individual servings. Serve hot. Makes 4 or 5 servings.

If you succeed in ransoming some crab meat from the fish market, how do you go about giving the whole family a taste of it? Consider Norman Erp's Crustacean Cream Soup. Less starchy than a chowder and more interestingly testured than a bisque, it is a splendid way to stretch that delectable crab flavor without diluting it too much or burying it in a crab Louis.

Crustacean Cream Soup 1 quart regular-strength chicken broth 1 cup whipping cream 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon white pepper 3 dashes liquid hot pepper seasoning 3/4 pound cooked, shelled crab 1 tablespoon butter or margarine 1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley 2 green onion, including tops, thinly sliced Lemon wedges

In a 3- to 4-quart pan, combine chicken broth, cream, nutmeg, pepper, and hot pepper seasoning. Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat and stir in crab, butter, and parsley. Simmer gently just unitl flavors blend, 3 to 4 minutes.

Ladle into individual mugs or bowls and garnish with onion. Serve with Lemon wedges. Makes about 2 quarts, or 5 or 6 servings, about 1-1/2-cup size. Layers of turkey, eggplant, cheese

Lean ground turkey, often sold in plastic casing like bulk pork sausage, teams with eggplant and parmesan cheese to make this light variation on an old Italian favorite, eggplant parmesan.

First, the eggplant slices are baked until creamy instead of fried; this is easier and neater than the more typical pan-fried method and uses much less oil. The slices are layered with turkey and tomato sauce, then topped with the cheese.

If you want to get a head start for a family meal, you can tuck the casserole in the refrigerator for a few days or freeze it for several months.

Eggplant Parmesan Casserole About 3/4 cup olive oil or salad oil 1 large (1-3/4 lb.) eggplant, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices, stem discarded 1 pound ground turkey 2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed 2 tablespoons dry Italian herbs 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour 1 can (4 oz.) diced green chilies 1 cup (about 5 oz.) grated parmesan cheese 1 can (15 oz.) tomato sauce 1/4 cup chopped parsley

Generously coat 2 or 3 rimmed 10- by 15-inch pans with olive oil; if you have I oven, use 2 pans and cook the eggplant in sequence; if you have 2 ovens, use 3 pans and cook eggplant all at once. Fit eggplant slices closely together in pans. Lightly brush top of eggplant slices with more oil.

Bake in a 350 [deg.] oven until eggplant slices give readily when pressed and are lightly browned, 25 to 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, pour 2 tablespoons olive oil into a 10- to 12-inch frying pan and place on medium-high heat. Add turkey and break into small chunks with a spoon. Add garlic and Italian herbs and cook, stirring occasionally, until juices from turkey evaporate and meat is well browned, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle flour over turkey and mix in. Then add chilies and cook, stirring, unitl mixture looks very dry, about 5 minutes.

Remove turkey from heat and stir in half the cheese; set aside.

Cover the bottom of a shallow 2- to 2-1/2-quart casserole with half the eggplant. Cover eggplant with half the turkey, and spoon half the tomato sauce over the meat. Repeat layers.

Sprinkle the top of the mixture with remaining cheese and the parsley. Cover tightly with foil. (If made ahead, you can refrigerate the casserole up to 3 days. Freeze to store longer; let thaw in refrigerator for 12 hours before continuing.)

Bake the casserole in a 375 [deg.] oven until hot in center, 45 minutes to 1 hour (1 to 1-1/4 hours if chilled).
COPYRIGHT 1986 Sunset Publishing Corp.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1986 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:includes recipes
Date:Jan 1, 1986
Previous Article:New look and flavor for an old winter friend - pot roast.
Next Article:Festive but punch, spritzer, sparkling aperitif.

Related Articles
Hillman Shrimp & Oyster Company Adds World Class IQF Scallops on the Halfshell to 2003 Product Line.
TV DINNERS: Scall you need; TOTAL TIME TO COOK 45min Master chef Brian Maule with a risotto dish using one of Scotland's finest species of...
RAMSAY WINS pounds 75k FOR KITCHEN NIGHTMARES; Telly chef gets payout after 'fake scenes' slur.
Children's menu.
We love telly: PICK OF THE DAY - Chefs' special hots up - MASTERCHEF: THE PROFESSIONALS BBC1, 6.30pm.
The teppanyaki delights of Shogun.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2017 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters