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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

In The Kitchen With Ralphael Arabrante

Chef Ralphael celebrates authentic Greek cooking at Thalassa with a particular emphasis on classic and modern Greek seafood dishes. A native New Yorker, Chef Ralphael learned to cook from his mother and grandmother. His passion for seafood and contemporary Greek cuisine developed early on in his career. His starting position at Thalassa was sous chef when it opened in 2002. In 2007, he was promoted to Executive Chef. He has consistently infused Thalassa dishes with his personal signature: a love of seasonal ingredients and a fundamental respect for the freshness and simplicity integral to the Greek palate. At Thalassa, he offers a modern twist on classic Greek recipes. Here's how to make it at home. Thanks Ralphael!

Thalassa Scallops Wrapped in Kataifi

4 extra large sea scallops
1/3 lb. kataifi filo
2 Tbs melted butter (for drizzling on filo)
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups balsamic vinegar
1 medium shallot, sliced
1 tsp fresh thyme
8 oz white wine
1/2 lb butter chips that have been thoroughly iced (for wine sauce)
1 tomato, diced
1/2 cup sliced scallions

Preheat oven to 450 degrees
Begin with the balsamic reduction: Take balsamic vinegar and reduce until syrupy, about 45 minutes over medium heat; set aside
During which time:
Wrap scallops with kataifi filo and drizzle with melted butter
Place on a baking sheet and bake at 450 degrees for 15 minutes
Make the white wine sauce:
Cook shallot, thyme and wine until completely reduced (i.e., no liquid left)
Add the iced butter chips and whip continuously
Salt and pepper to taste
To assemble:
Cut cooked wrapped scallop in half and place in the center of the plate
Cover with white wine sauce
Drizzle with balsamic vinegar reduction
Garnish with tomato and scallions
Top with dill and delight!

Recipe first published in Next magazine.

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