Recipe: Cocoa Chili Rubbed Scallops on Belgian Endive with Chocolate Citrus Vinaigrette
This amazing appetizer will take your guests’ breath away, both in presentation and flavor. The cocoa and chili pair nicely with the natural sweetness of the scallops. The floral fennel balances well with the bright orange flavors. And the sweetness of the chocolate soothes the bitter endive beautifully.
This recipe calls for chive flowers, which I’ve only ever seen on the chive plant growing in my herb garden in June when they are in bloom. If you do not have a chive plant of your own, or it is not in bloom at the moment, you can substitute chopped chives instead. Though not as beautiful, the subtle onion flavor should be the same.
Cocoa Chili Rubbed Scallops Appetizer Recipe Ingredients and Directions
- 1 lbs bay scallops
- 2 tablespoons Ancho/Pasilla Chili powder
- 2 tablespoons New Mexico Chili powder
- 4 tablespoons cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon or so finely ground fennel seed
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- ¼ teaspoon Kosher salt and pepper to taste
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Mix all dry ingredients together. Reserve 1 teaspoon of the cocoa spice rub for the vinaigrette.
Pat scallops dry with paper towel, and toss with spice rub. Shake off excess rub.
Sear scallops in olive oil over medium high heat, cooking for 1 minute on each side. Space them out from each other in the pan so you can easily turn them (will need to do in separate batches, probably 3 or 4). When finished, place on baking pan that has been lined with paper towels to drain and cool.
Chocolate Citrus Vinaigrette Recipe Ingredients and Directions
- Juice of half an orange
- ½ tablespoon white wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon reserved cocoa spice rub
- 1/8 teaspoon salt and pepper to taste
- Half cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ½ tablespoons sugar to taste
Whisk all ingredients together except for olive oil, until sugar and salt has dissolved. Slowly whisk in olive oil to combine, being careful not to break the vinaigrette.
Assembly and Presentation Instructions
- 4 Belgian Endive heads, spears separated
- 2-3 chive flower heads, flowers individually separated
- Zest of 1 orange
- Dark chocolate shavings
Assemble by arranging Belgian endive spears on a serving platter. Place 1-3 scallops, depending on quantity ratio, on each Belgian endive spear. Drizzle with chocolate citrus vinaigrette, then top each scallop with a pinch of orange zest and 1 chive flower. Sprinkle with dark chocolate shavings. Garnish serving platter with chocolate shavings and vinaigrette drizzle. Serve room temperature.
Recipe by Jothan Yeager, May 2008
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