Recipe: Blackened Diver Scallops
Presented by Michael’s on East in Sarasota, one of 100 top restaurants nationwide featured in “The Restaurant Diet.” This dish is part of this month’s Epicurean Adventures special menu, highlighting the cuisine of New Orleans. Recipe and photo by Michael’s on East.
New Orleans Blackened Diver Scallops
Crawfish & Tasso Corn Maque Choux, Grilled Cajun Smoked Sausage,
Sautéed Baby Kale & Crispy Onion Straws
For the Crawfish Maque Choux
4 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
1/4 cup Tasso, finely diced
3 Ears of Corn
1/2 cup Onion, finely diced
1/4 cup Celery, finely diced
1/2 cup Green Pepper, finely diced
1 Tbsp Fresh Thyme leaves
1/8 cup Garlic, minced
1 Cup Tomato, diced
1/2 Cup Green Onions, finely sliced
Kosher Salt, Black Pepper and Cayenne to taste
1 cup Fresh Okra
Cut the corn off the cobs using a very sharp knife. (The trick is to cut about half way through the kernels, then go back and scrape the cobs with your knife to extract all of the milk into a bowl. Reserve the corn milk.) Melt the butter in a two-quart sauce pan, add the Tasso and cook on medium-high heat until slightly brown. Add the corn, onion, celery, bell pepper, thyme and a healthy pinch of salt and reduce the heat to medium. Cook for 15 minutes stirring often, until the vegetables are tender. Add the garlic, okra, tomatoes, reserved corn milk and another pinch of salt. Cook for another 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the green onions, salt, black pepper and cayenne to your taste.
For the Blackened Seasoning
1 ½ Tbsp Paprika
1 Tbsp Garlic Powder
1 Tbsp Onion Powder
1 Tbsp Ground Dried Thyme
1 tsp Ground Black Pepper
1 tsp Cayenne Pepper
1 tsp Dried Basil
1 tsp Dried Oregano
Combine the paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, thyme, black pepper, cayenne pepper, basil and oregano in a bowl until evenly mixed. Store in an airtight container in a cool, dry place.
For the Angel Hair Onion Rings
8 oz Yellow Onions, thinly sliced using a slicer or mandolin
1 cup Wondra Flour
2 oz House Ketchup
1 Tbsp Chiffonade Basil
Dredge onion rings in Wondra. Shake off excess flour and fry until golden. Season with salt and set aside until the dish is ready to be plated.
For the Scallops
12 #10 sized Dried Scallops
2 cups Garlic-Scented Sautéed Baby Kale
2 tsp Olive Oil
4 pieces of Grilled Cajun Smoked Sausage, cut in half and 3 inches long
Season the scallops with blackened seasoning. Add the oil and sear scallops over medium-high heat on both sides until the scallops are blackened.
On four large plates, divide the Crawfish Maque Choux, place the kale top of the Maque Choux and then top with scallops and grilled sausage, evenly distributed. Finish with the onion rings and serve!