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Our recipe for December - Pan-fried scallops with parsnip purée & pancetta crumbs

Our fish focus for December is the Scallop.

Whether they are our locally caught scallops from Newhaven, our XL king scallops from the Shetlands, sweet Queenies from the Isle of Man or our perfect Diver Caught Scallops from Brixham you will love this recipe, it would make a great special starter for Christmas or double up for a tasty main course.

Give it a go and let us know.

Serves 3


  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil

  • 9 large scallops

  • juice ½ lemon

For the pancetta crumbs

  • 50g pancetta, cut into 5cm slices

  • 50g fresh breadcrumb

  • 1 tbsp thyme leaf, chopped

For the parsnip purée

  • 200g parsnip, cut into chunks

  • 200ml full-fat milk

  • small knob of butter


  • To make the pancetta crumbs (which you can do up to a day ahead), set a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add the pancetta and sizzle for 5 mins, turning, until coloured. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs into the pan and continue frying and stirring until browned and crisp. Blitz the mixture in a food processor to fine crumbs. Mix in the thyme and store in an airtight container if making ahead.

  • To make the parsnip purée, tip the parsnips into a small saucepan with the milk and some seasoning. Bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 mins until the parsnips are tender. Purée the mixture in the food processor, then add the butter. Rub through a fine sieve into a clean saucepan, ready to reheat.

  • Heat the oil in a large frying pan over a high heat. Season the scallops and lay them in a circle around the edge of the pan (see step 1). When the last scallop has been added, leave for 1 min until browned. Then, starting with the first scallop, gently turn (step 2). When all the scallops are cooked, transfer to a warm plate and quickly add the lemon juice to your hot pan, scraping the bottom to form a sauce and adding a splash of water if needed.

  • Reheat the parsnip purée, then swipe onto 3 plates (step 3). Top with the scallops, pancetta crumbs and juices from the pan. Serve straight away.


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