Lunchbreak: Scallops with Fennel Risotto

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Chef Jason Shelley, Executive Chef

Ocean Prime Chicago

87 E. Wacker Dr., Chicago, IL 60601


Scallops & Risotto

 Fennel Salad

¼ Cup Parsley, leaves

¼ Cup Celery, baby leaves

1/2 Cup Fennel bulb, shaved thin

1/4 Cup Onion, Red Jumbo, julienne


  1. Remove parsley leaves from stems, and celery leaves from stalks. Shock in ice water.
  2. Remove core from fennel bulb and shave half of the bulb very thin and pick off small pieces of fennel fronts and shock them.
  3. Shave the red onion very think (a thin julienne).
  4. Combine parsley leaves, celery leaves, red onion, fennel fronds and shaved fennel.
  5. Reserve like this for until to serve.
  6. Dress salad when ready to serve it with lemon juice and EVOO, season with salt to taste.


Fennel Risotto

1 Lb of Rice, Arborio

2 Tbsp   Oil, Blended

1 Tbsp   Garlic, Peeled, Sliced

3 Tbsp   Shallots, Peeled, Minced

¼ Cup Fennel Bulb

1 Ea      Spice, Bay Leaf

1/2 Tbsp    Herbs – Thyme

1/2  Cup   Liquor, White Wine

6 Cup    Diluted Chicken Stock

4 Tbsp   Butter, Unsalted

1/2 Tbsp  Salt, Kosher


  1. Remove core and fronds from fennel and shave very thinly on a mandoline.
  2. Heat oil in a large saute pan until smoking. Add garlic, shallots and fennel.
  3. Sweat until translucent and add rice. Toast briefly (approx. 1 minute).
  4. Add bay leaves and thyme, then add wine and reduce to almost dry.
  5. Stir with a wooden spoon and add stock in 8oz increments, stirring continuously. Add salt.
  6. Add butter, one tablespoon at a time all the way thorough the last addition of stock.
  7. Discard bay leaves and thyme sprigs and adjust seasoning as necessary.
  8. Place risotto on a sheet tray to cool at room temperature.
  9. Once cooled, transfer to a sealed container.


Entrée-Scallops & Risotto

4 Ea Scallops

1 Tbsp Clarified Butter

2/3 Cup Fennel Risotto

1/2 Cup   Diluted Chicken Stock

3 Tbsp   Cheese, Parmesan, Grated

1 Tsp     Sour Cream

1 Tbsp   English Peas

1 Tbsp   Snap Peas

1 Tsp     Parsley, Minced

1/4 Tsp Salt, Kosher

Dash of White Pepper

1/4 Cup Fennel Salad

2 Ea        Lemon Wedge (1/6 th cut)

1 Tsp     Oil, Extra Virgin


  1. Sear scallops on flat top (skillet) in clarified butter on both sides until golden brown.
  2. Heat risotto in chicken stock with both peas, stirring constantly with wooden spoon over medium heat.
  3. When risotto is hot, add parmesan, herb mix and sour cream. Season to taste.
  4. Once everything is done cooking add parsley.
  5. Place risotto into center of a warm large round plate with four scallops arranged evenly around the plate at 12, 3, 6, and 9 o’clock, with half of each scallop resting on the risotto, and the other half on the plate.
  6. Toss fennel salad with juice from 1 lemon wedge, EVOO and a pinch of salt & white pepper.
  7. Pile the salad directly in the middle as high as possible.
  8. Squeeze the other lemon and drizzle EVOO over entire dish.



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