with Sweet Corn Risotto, Mushroom Ragu
Executive chef Roger Seanor and sous chef Eric Von Hansen
of Lucca Ristorante in Oakland offer this entree -- highlighted by a rustic-style mushroom sauce -- on the menu. Make the
individual recipes for the risotto, ragu and tomato confit in stages -- the scallops are cooked last, then plated with the
other ingredients for serving.
Sweet Corn Risotto
• 2 tablespoons olive oil-canola
oil blend, more for oiling corn
• 1 teaspoon diced fresh garlic
• 1/2 cup diced white onion
2 ears unhusked corn on the cob
• 1 cup arborio rice
• 1/2 cup white wine
• 2 cups hot
chicken stock or water
• 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
• 1 cup heavy cream
• 2 ounces
(1/2 stick) salted butter
• Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
In a medium-size pot, heat 2
tablespoons vegetable oil, then add the garlic and onion. Heat over medium to low heat, stirring, until the garlic and onion
are halfway cooked. Remove from the heat and set aside.
To roast the corn: Cut off excess silk hanging from the end
of the corn cobs and remove the tassels. Remove a layer of dark green leaves from the corn, keeping the lighter ones intact
so the kernels will stay moist while roasting. Do not husk the corn.
Rub vegetable oil over the outside of the cobs
and put them over a flame (gas stove or grill) until they are charred on the outside, turning to evenly roast, until browned
on the outside. (If you are doing this inside, make sure you have a good ventilation hood to clear the smoke.) Or, heat the
oven to 400 degrees. Place the cobs directly onto the oven rack and let them roast for about 20 minutes, turning occasionally.
Let the corn cool until you can handle it. Remove the leaves and silk. Using a very sharp long knife, cut off the kernels
. Set aside. (The corn kernels can be chilled, covered, for as long as 1 day.)
Return the onion and garlic to the stove,
and place the pot over low heat. Add the rice and lightly toast it, stirring, then add the wine. Deglaze the pan until the
wine is absorbed. Add the water, 1/4 cup at a time, stirring constantly, until all of the water is absorbed and the rice is
creamy. Stir in the sugar, cream and butter and heat, stirring, until the ingredients are combined. Gently fold in the corn
kernels. Season with salt and pepper.
Makes 4 servings.
Wild Mushroom Ragu
is a French reduction sauce used as a base for all brown sauces. Chefs usually make their own from scratch, but fine gourmet
shops and upscale supermarkets often carry it.
• 2 ounces (1/4 cup) olive oil-canola oil blend
clove garlic, minced
• 1 medium-size shallot, diced
• 2 sprigs fresh thyme
• 1 cup sliced
• 1 cup sliced crimini mushrooms
• 1 cup diced portobello mushrooms
1 cup sliced button mushrooms
• 1 cup sliced fresh morel mushrooms
• 1 cup port wine
2 cups demiglace
• 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
• 1 tablespoon kosher salt
• 1 tablespoon
freshly ground black pepper
Place a medium-size pot over low heat. When hot, add the oil, then the garlic, shallot
and thyme. Over medium heat, cook until halfway done. Stir in the mushrooms gradually and let them cook for 10 minutes. Add
the port wine to deglaze the pan, letting the mixture simmer for 5 minutes. Add the demiglace, sugar, salt and pepper, and
let simmer for 10 minutes. Let cool to room temperature.
pint cherry tomatoes
• 1 cup white wine
• 1 cup heavy cream
• 3 ounces (6 tablespoons)
unsalted butter, cut into bits
• 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
• 1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Cut the cherry tomatoes in half. Put them into a medium-size bowl.
the wine in a saute pan, put it over high heat and reduce by two-thirds. Add the cream and let reduce by half. Lower the heat
and gradually add the butter, stirring with a spoon. Add the chives, salt and pepper. Remove the pan from the heat and add
the tomatoes . Let stand until room temperature. Use immediately.
Makes 4 servings.
• 12 large sea scallops (10 per pound)
• Olive oil-canola oil blend
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
• Port wine reduction, if desired (see Note)
• Fresh basil and rosemary sprigs, for garnish
• Microsprouts, for garnish
Heat the oven to
350 degrees. Rub the scallops with a bit of the oil blend to lightly coat, then season with kosher salt and freshly cracked
black pepper. Heat an ovenproof skillet -- preferably seasoned cast-iron -- until very hot, and place the scallops in one
layer, not touching each other, until the bottoms are golden brown. Flip the scallops over to sear the other side --
do not sear the ends -- then put the skillet in the oven to finish cooking, for about 5 minutes. The scallops are done when
they are translucent in the center.
To plate the dish: Place a circle of risotto in the center of
4 dinner plates. Spoon the tomato confit onto either side of the risotto and drizzle some of the sauce over the risotto. Spoon
the mushroom ragu on the sides of the risotto opposite the tomato confit . Place 3 scallops in a line over the risotto on
each plate. If desired, drizzle each with a little port wine reduction, then garnish with the basil, rosemary and microsprouts.
Makes 4 servings.
Note: To prepare a port wine reduction, combine 1/2 cup chopped onion, 1/2
cup chopped carrots, 2 bay leaves and 3 cups port wine in a medium-size saucepan. Place it over medium heat and bring to a
boil. Boil until the mixture thickens and reduces to about 1/2 cup, for about 45 minutes. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer
and let cool. Use at room temperature. Makes 1/2 cup. For garnishing dishes, put the reduction into a plastic container with
a nozzle -- such as a clean mustard dispenser -- and use as needed. Recipe is from cooksrecipes.com.