Serves 4

The humble Jerusalem artichoke has an earthy taste that perfectly offsets the sweetness and luxuriousness of the scallops. Ask your fishmonger to clean the scallops as they can be tricky for the uninitiated to deal with.

The humble Jerusalem artichoke has an earthy taste that perfectly offsets the sweetness and luxuriousness of the scallops. Ask your fishmonger to clean the scallops as they can be tricky for the uninitiated to deal with.

12 medium scallops, cleaned and left in the cupped half shell
300g Jerusalem artichokes, peeled and halved if large
1tbsp olive oil
6 thick rashers of streaky bacon, cut into rough 1/2cm dice or you can buy the equivalent of pre-diced pancetta
80g butter
1tbsp chopped parsley
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Cover the artichokes in salted water, bring to the boil and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until tender. Drain well and blend until smooth in a blender or food processor. Return to a clean pan on a low heat, stirring so it doesn't stick, until the purée is spooning consistency, but not wet and sloppy. Season, stir in about 30g butter and keep warm.

Meanwhile remove the scallops from the shell and season. Rub a non-stick pan with the tiniest amount of olive oil (too much will make the scallops boil not sear) and heat until almost smoking. Add the scallops and cook for a minute on each side, then remove from the pan and place on to a plate. Lower the heat and add the bacon and the rest of the olive oil to the pan. Cook gently for 2-3 minutes, stirring every so often, add the rest of the butter and heat until it begins to foam, remove from the heat and add the parsley.

To serve, warm the shells in a low oven for a few minutes then spoon the Jerusalem artichoke purée into the shells and place a scallop on top. Divide the shells between the plates and spoon the butter and bacon on top of the scallops.

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