Scallops with Curried Corn Puree – The evolution of a recipe

The evolution of my recipe for scallops with curried corn puree –

I’ve been doing a lot of cooking lately for a lot of dinner parties and a few boats.  I’ve been challenging myself and have, overall, been very happy with the results.  For each dinner party I like to give my clients a few choices and each time I like to come up with new ideas.  As a result, I frequently give menu options that I haven’t made before.  This weekend I’ll be cooking for a dinner party for 23, the starter they chose is Scallops with Curried Corn Puree.  My thought process begins when I’m writing the menu options – I love scallops, they make a nice presentation for a plated appetizer.  I’ve made corn puree before as the base for a main course fish dish (which I think is in a previous post on my blog) and I love curry so much that I would probably eat a shoe if it had curry on it.

Last night I went to work practicing the dish.  I look online, searching on Google for the exact recipe, which I usually don’t find, so I look for parts of the recipe.  I had planned to make the puree the same way I’ve made it in the past, just add some curry, but I found a recipe with apples in the puree, which go very well with curry, so tried that, then realized that I’m out of Madras curry powder so looked in my cupboard and found Vadouvan, a French Curry with curry leaves as a main flavoring ingredient (I love curry leaves), it is a light flavor and I thought would go well with the sweet mild flavor of both the scallops and the corn…. really good corn puree (I’ll write out the recipe below).  Then I seared the scallops, which I had dried very well and dusted with salt and a little more of the vadouvan.  As I was cooking the scallops I realized that the sweet and rich corn puree and the sweet and rich scallops would mix well but be a little “monotone”, so I thought about a vinaigrette and then thought that I’ve done that before and wanted to do something else – so I made a little salad of julienne green apple and parsely – the cold, tart and crisp apple was a great complement to the scallops and corn, the parsley didn’t work too well – it was too tough.  the final dish was the corn puree, scallops and julienne apple – it was great and the guests loved it.

Here’s the recipe (as well as I can remember)

Seared Scallops with Curried Corn Puree and Green Apples

Serves 4 as a main course and 6 as an appetizer


  • 1 Shallot, rough dice
  • 2tbl butter (I use organic – it tastes better)
  • 1tbl vadouvan or other curry powder mix
  • 1 green apple, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1lb Corn, organic frozen or kernels cut from fresh ears
  • 1/2 – 1 cup cream or creme fraiche
  • salt, pepper, lemon and cayenne to taste
  1. melt the butter and add the shallot, cook until the shallot is translucent.
  2. Add the vadouvan and apple and cook until the apple is slightly softened.
  3. Add the corn and cream and cook for approximately 10 minutes.
  4. Blend in a blender (take the middle part of the top of the blender off and cover with a tea towel to avoid an explosion) or an immersion blender or a cuisinart. (If you want to skip this step, make sure that the shallot and apple are finely diced and cook the mixture until the cream has thickened a bit.)


  • 1 Green apple
  • 1 Juice of lemon
  1. Julienne the apple and toss with lemon juice


  • 1 lb Sea Scallops (dry pack)
  • 1 tbl vadouvan mixed with 1 tsp of salt
  • 3 tbl butter
  • 1tbl canola oil
  1. Dry the scallops very well.  I use paper towel and press fairly hard to dry them.
  2. remove the abductor muscle (or don’t – it’s not always tough)
  3. dust the scallops with vadouvan
  4. melt the butter and oil in a pan until it is almost smoking
  5. add the scallops and do not move them for two minutes – you may need to do this in batches – you want plenty of space so that the temp in the pan stays very hot.
  6. turn the scallops and cook for approximately 1 more minute on the other side.

Plating – start with the corn puree – place an odd number of scallops on top of the puree (for an appetizer I use three 10/20 size scallops) and top the scallops with about 1-2 tbls of apple.


PS.  Leftover corn puree makes a great soup!  Add broth or water or more cream and drink up!

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