This week on The Restaurant, musician and former Eurovision winner Paul Harrington rocks into the kitchen hoping to impress Marco Pierre White, Celebrity Chef Rachel Allen and Guest Food Critic Martin Shanahan of Fishy Fishy in Kinsale.
Paul is hoping to bring a touch of his Eurovision winning magic to The Restaurant, with six nostalgic dishes to serenade the critics with.
Paul’s menus grounded in classic fare, making it a challenge to wow the diners and critics. Serving up two fish starters, the first was inspired by one of Paul’s favourite Dublin eateries, The Trocadero, a crab and spinach roulade with a warm dill sauce.
Next up, a simple combination of seared scallops with tarragon butter, a dish Paul’s father used to cook from time-to-time as a treat in the Harrington household.
For mains, Paul served Connemara Hill rack of lamb with peas and in a first for the long-standing series, a T-bone steak, served with truffle fries. To round off the meal, Paul served a sherry trifle dessert in honour of his late sister, Siobhan and a lemon tart with brûlée which offered the diners the right contrast between sweet and bitter.
With such a varied array of dishes served up by the Eurovision singer, TheTaste sat down with Marco to find out which dish really hit the high notes for him on the night. A lover of simple, well executed dishes, Marco was won over by the perfectly cooked lamb rack and particularly the “Birdseye peas”!
If you have been wooed by the sound of Paul’s scallop starter, we have the recipe so you can whip it up at home yourself.
Seared Scallops with Tarragon Butter
– 50g chilled unsalted butter
– 12 prepared large fresh scallops
– 2 tsp chopped fresh tarragon
– rock salt, for serving
– fresh micro tarragon herb, to garnish (optional)
1. Rub the base of a non-stick frying pan well with the block of butter, and cut the remainder into small pieces. Set the pan over a high heat and as soon as the butter starts to smoke, add the scallops and sear for 2 minutes on each side, seasoning them with a little salt and pepper as they cook. Transfer the scallops to warmed scallop shells, each one sat on a little pile of rock salt to keep the shells steady.
2. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the butter a few pieces at a time, then add the tarragon and season with a little salt and pepper. Spoon over the scallops and garnish with micro tarragon, if liked.
The Restaurant airs at 9pm on TV3 on Wednesday nights and is sponsored by Gas Networks Ireland.