500 g fresh chestnuts
200 ml pouring cream
100 g eschallots, peeled and finely diced
50 g roasted hazelnuts, chopped
1 ½ Tbsp white sesame seeds
1 ½ Tbsp black sesame seeds
50 ml pomace oil
30 ml red wine vinegar
40 ml port
Salt and freshly cracked pepper
5 mint leaves
12 fresh scallops
100 g water chestnuts, cut in ½ cm dice fresh or canned
Preheat oven to 200 C.
Score a cross in the top of each chestnut and place on an oven tray. Roast for 20 minutes till all the chestnuts pop open. Peel and place in a saucepan with milk and cream and cook till tender. Strain chestnuts and blend with a small amount of cooking liquid till smooth. Pass through a fine strainer.
Place hazelnuts in a bowl with sesame seeds, oil, vinegar, port and salt. Mix well. Finely slice mint and add.
Heat chestnut puree gently in a small pan. Preheat a large fry pan with a small amount of pomace oil. Season scallops with salt and freshly cracked pepper. Cook in the pan till nicely coloured about 30 seconds. Turn over using a spatula and cook a further 10 seconds.
Place a spoonful of chestnut puree on to warmed plates. Arrange scallops on top then sprinkle over water chestnuts. Drizzle eschallot salsa over the top.
Excerpt from 'We Love the Gong: EAT', in associate with www.visitwollongong.com.au.