This dish is an absolute show-stopper.

We serve scallops in a variety of different ways at Ondine, but this version is my all-time favourite. A good friend of the last ten years Guy Grieves owns The Ethical Shellfish Company. Ondine was the very first restaurant Guy supplied. I vividly remember him walking into the restaurant for the first time with his bright yellow waders on with the most amazing hand-caught scallops.

His ethics on conservation are something I greatly admire and support. It’s important not to be buying dredged scallops as they have such a devastating effect on our sea beds. That’s why we work with fantastic suppliers like The Ethical Fish Company. To my friend Guy, we salute you.

Ondine is located at 2 George IV Bridge in Edinburgh. For more information, visit

Serves 4 to 5 as a starter

For the bacon jam:

  • 50g smoked bacon, thinly sliced
  • 30g onion, diced
  • 8 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 50ml sherry vinegar
  • 50g dark brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 20ml fresh espresso coffee
  • 20ml olive oil
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the scallops:

  • 10 large scallops, shucked and cleaned (make sure to keep the cleaned shells for serving)
  • 50g parsley butter
  • 50ml brown chicken stock, reduced
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 100g puff pastry, cut into 2cm x 30cm strips
  • 2 free-range eggs, beaten

To serve:

  • Sea salt


1. First, make the bacon jam. Cook the bacon in the olive oil until crispy then strain the fat and keep the bacon to one side. Return the bacon fat to the pan and sweat down the onion and garlic until soft. Add the vinegar, sugar, syrup and espresso and then return the bacon to the pan and continue to cook, stirring occasionally. Once the juices become syrupy in texture, remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool. Once cooled, taste and season with salt and pepper as necessary.

2. Next, prepare the scallops. Preheat the oven to 200°C. In a thick-bottomed pan, bring the chicken stock to the boil on the hob. Remove the pan from the heat then fold through a tablespoon of the bacon jam.

3. Brush the scallops all over with the parsley butter and season with salt and pepper.

4. Spoon a teaspoon of the bacon jam and stock mixture into the bottom halves of the shells and place the scallop on top.

5. Place the other half of the shell on top of each scallop and place a puff pastry strip carefully right around the gap where the shells meet. The seal is important as it will lock in all of the juices and flavour as the scallop cooks. The scallop will steam in the shell, cooking very gently and evenly. If the seal is not tight enough then the heat from the oven will enter the shell and overcook it. Brush the pastry and top of the shell with the beaten egg.

6. Place the scallops on a baking tray, standing each one on a ring of scrunched foil to keep them level. Cook in the preheated oven for 8 minutes.

7. To serve, open the shells and top each scallop with a little more bacon jam and serve on a bed of wet rock salt.