Easy Fine Dining at Home: Scallops with Cauliflower Puree

October 18, 2010

seared scallop

Disaster. Run and hide. For the last two weeks I’ve been cooking at home and the results haven’t been pleasing. I meant to tell you about the pomegranate glazed turkey breasts, for instance, and the grilled onion salad. They were going to be very autumnal and satisfying thank-you-very-much. I also meant to go on and on about the moussaka. But lately, over-extension meets over-ambition and I’ve been left with nothin’ but a stomach full’a sighs.

But alas! This weekend! Finally a breakthrough! I stumbled upon not one but several original Todd Kelly recipes online at the Orchids at Palm Court website. And now I’m back, baby.

Shazaam! Look at this first course dish — scallops with a fluffy bed of cauliflower puree. Tod Kelly is known, of course, for his grandiose style and his exotic ingredients. And at least until March, he’s the King of Cincinnati — number one on the list of Cincinnati Magazine’s Top Ten Restaurants. But in several of these recipes, he pares ingredients and procedures down for homecooks who likes to .. well … cook.

This whole dish was made with four ingredients — granted one of them is truffle oil — but it was incredibly easy to assemble and was a complete show stopper. Even if you don’t like cauliflower raw or cooked, pureeing it is a sneaky little way to experience the flavor without the texture. Delicate. Subtle. Earthy. A fantastic shortcut to fine dining at home.

It’s been a full 24 hours since my family and I gobbled up these hard seared scallops and their buttery cloud of cauiflower. But I’m still smiling. My losing streak is over, people. I can feel it in my bones.

Scallops with Cauliflower Puree

No need for me to describe it here. Download Todd Kelly’s original recipe here.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Mark October 18, 2010 at 9:37 am

Great to see he’s got some recipes up online. Will have to check them out. Thanks for the post.

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Jen October 18, 2010 at 10:29 am

I feel like we have this cosmic thing going on where you just knew I picked up some scallops at Findlay Market yesterday and was looking for a way to cook them tonight. Thank YOU very much.

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Intuitive Eggplant October 18, 2010 at 6:27 pm

I never met a scallop – or a cauliflower puree – I didn’t like. Yours look superb, and thanks for sharing Chef Kelly’s recipe. Hmmm, Mark Bittman just ran a recipe for quick preserved lemons, so I may have to try.

Meanwhile, thanks for taking time in your busy schedule to stop by my place. To hear that you, of the great food porn, appreciate my pics makes me smile.

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