This delicious dish from Lobstar in Monkstown uses fresh scallops and Irish ingredients to create unique flavours.

We use Irish king scallops for this recipe. If you butterfly them first, they are much faster and easier to cook. You’re literally talking about 20 seconds on each side. It’s so important not to overcook them. We pair them with Clonakilty black pudding and cauliflower" – Zsolt Zatar, head chef and owner at Lobstar Monkstown

Yield: Serves 4 as a starter


  • 400g cauliflower
  • 50g butter
  • 250ml cream
  • 250ml milk
  • 2 vanilla pods
  • 5g sugar
  • 10g Maldon sea salt
  • 500g fresh Irish king scallops
  • 250g broccoli
  • 250g black pudding
  • 25g hazelnut
  • Red amaranth and celery cress, to garnish


  1. Cut the cauliflower into florets. Use half of them for the purée and the other half for roasting.
  2. To make the purée, put the chopped cauliflower into a saucepan with half the butter and some salt. When the cauliflower starts to get soft, add the cream, milk, sugar and the seeds from a vanilla pod. Cook over a low enough temperature until you get a clean white purée. Don’t boil it.
  3. To make some vanilla sea salt, mix the seeds of the other vanilla pod with the Maldon sea salt and set aside in a jar.
  4. Clean the scallops and remove the roe (this is the orange part). Butterfly the scallops.
  5. Blanch the other half of the cauliflower and the broccoli for three to five minutes. Drain and, when almost ready to serve, add to a hot pan with some oil and seasoning until charred on the outside.
  6. Meanwhile, spoon the black pudding into quenelles and roast in the oven at 180ºC/gas mark 4 for five to six minutes.
  7. Cook the scallops in a hot smoking pan for 20 seconds each side until they’re just crispy on the outside but juicy on the inside. Meanwhile, put 50g of butter in a hot pan until brown. Set aside.
  8. To serve, place some of the warm cauliflower purée on and a plate and place the scallops, roasted cauliflower and broccoli on top and spoon on your roasted quenelle of black pudding.
  9. Grate some hazelnut on top, sprinkle over the vanilla salt and a drizzle of melted brown butter. Garnish with cress or red amaranth.

TIP: Use Romanesco when it’s in season during the winter in place of broccoli.