Scallops with Crispy Pork Belly and Curried Lentils

Scallops are one of my favourite ingredients and something I often order for a starter in a restaurant, so here is my signature scallop dish! It has some lovely subtle curry flavours that pair perfectly with the sweet scallops and the richness of the pork belly. For a show stopping dinner party starter, give this one a try.

Scallops, pork belly, curried lentils recipe

Serves 4

  • 12 large king scallops (without roe)
  • 500g pork belly (skin scored and boneless)
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 2 white onions
  • 2 carrots
  • 250g cooked puy lentils
  • 400g coconut milk
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 bunch of fresh coriander
  • 1 pack of samphire
  1. Put salt, pepper, fennel seeds and 2 tbsp rape seed oil in a pestle and mortar and grind until the fennel seeds have broken down. Pour the mixture over the pork belly and rub all over the meat.
  2. Chop 1 onion and 2 carrots into large chunks and place in a roasting dish with the pork on top. Pour boiling water into the roasting tray so the bottom half of the pork belly is submerged in water but the skin is left uncovered. Cover the dish with baking parchment and foil and roast in the oven at 150Oc for 2½ hours. After 2½ hours, remove the parchment and foil and roast for 20-30 minutes at 180Oc until the skin is crispy. Remove the pork from the oven and let it rest while you prepare the rest of the dish.
  3. Finely chop the onion and gentry fry with some oil. Once the onions have softened add the cumin, turmeric and garam masala and fry for a further minute before adding the cooked lentils and the coconut milk. Season with salt and pepper and leave to simmer for around 20 minutes. Add chopped coriander just before serving.
  4. Heat some oil in a frying pan, season the scallops with salt and pepper then fry the scallops for 1-2 minutes on each side. You want to get some nice colour on the scallops without over cooking them.
  5. While the scallops are cooking add the samphire to the pan for a couple of minutes.
  6. Now everything is cooked, plate up your dish with the lentils first, topped with the scallops, a small square of pork belly and a few pieces of samphire. Enjoy!