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Dining At The Parks: Scallops In Potato Nest With Ponzu Sauce And Citrus Vinaigrette From Lake Quinault Lodge In Olympic National Park


Chefs at restaurants in and around national parks spend a lot of time designing dishes reflective of their surroundings. So is it any surprise that Lake Quinault Lodge Executive Chef Patrick Norris, surrounded by the wonders of Olympic National Park, focused on scallops recently when he was looking for something special?

The result was placing that seafood jewel into a potato "nest" and surrounding it with greens, sprouts, and a tangy citrus vinaigrette. Here's how you can make this dish at home:

* Season 1 pound of 10-20 Weathervane scallops with salt and pepper and place in sauté pan over medium heat with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Sear scallop on both sides for about 1 ½ minutes per side.

* For the Candied orange wheel: Slice as thin as possible with deli slicer. Mix 2 cups of water with 1 cup of sugar and allow to come to a simmer. Blanch in sugar water for about 15 seconds. Place orange on silt pat baking mat (a non-stick silicon mat) on sheet pan and bake at 200 degrees for about 1 hour. Remove from pan with metal spatula and place on cooling rack.

* In a large saucepan, bring three unpeeled potatoes and enough cold water to cover to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat, cover and simmer potatoes until just cooked, about 20 minutes. Drain potatoes, let cool and then refrigerate for at least 1 hour, until cold.

* Preheat oven to 425°F. Lightly grease mini-muffin-tin cups. Peel and coarsely grate potatoes. Gently toss potatoes with salt and pepper in a bowl. Place about 1 heaping Tbsp. potato mixture into each muffin cup and press against bottom and up sides, allowing some mixture to extend above rim. (Do not spread mixture too thin or holes will form while baking.)

* Bake potato nests until edges are dark golden, about 25 minutes. Cool nests in pans for 10 minutes. Carefully remove nests from pans and place on a baking sheet lined with paper towels to set. (Nests may be made up to 4 hours ahead; leave at room temperature.)

* Preheat oven to 375°F. Place potato nests on a clean, large baking sheet and bake until heated through and crisp, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer potato nests to a plate. Place micro greens in bottom of nest cascading out and place pan seared scallop in nest with candied orange wheel behind scallop.

Drizzle with Ponzu sauce and spoon citrus vinaigrette around plate.

Serve Immediately

Citrus Vinaigrette

2/3 cup rice wine vinegar

1/3 cup orange juice

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1 teaspoon honey

Whisk together the vinegar, orange juice, oil, cilantro, mustard, garlic, and honey in a bowl; store in refrigerator.

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