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October 15, 2016

We were lucky enough to visit the kitchen of Tower Restaurant, above Edinburgh’s National Museum of Scotland, and meet with Head Chef Jose Dalto who showed us how to cook hand-dived scallops with skordalia potato, crispy ham and bouillabaisse sauce.

Watch him make the dish in the video above and get the recipe in full below.

Recipe for hand-dived scallops with skordalia potato, crispy ham & bouillabaisse sauce

5 Scallops (shell removed)

In a hot frying pan, cook the scallops for about 2 minutes on each side (depending on size). Season with Maldon salt.

Fish soup

1 bulb fennel

2 large onions

2 red peppers

½ tin tomato puree

2 kg red tomatoes

3 cloves garlic

2 leeks

2 red chillis

2 large cod heads with eyes and gills removed

½ bottle of white wine

1 dessert spoon of ground cumin, paprika, coriander and 25g fresh oregano.

Sweat all vegetables (apart from tomatoes) with the spices. Add the rest of the ingredients and cook slowly for 2 hours.

Remove the bones and blitz until smooth, pass through a fine sieve.

Season with Maldon salt and lemon juice.

(You will end up with some left over soup but you can have it for lunch next day)


500g mashed potato (no butter, no cream)

60g olive oil

1 clove garlic

1 lemon juiced

Maldon salt to taste

Fennel wedges

1 fennel cut into quarters

Pinch of fennel seeds

3 oranges (juice)

1 lemon (juice)

Cook the fennel wedges in a sauce pan with the juices slowly until tender.

Crispy ham

2 slices of serrano ham

Cook the ham in between silicon paper and 2 heavy trays for about 8 minutes at about 180 degrees.


To assemble the dish pour some sauce into the middle of the plate, add the skordalia potato and fennel wedges, arrange the scallops and crispy ham and garnish with micro fennel.

You can get 2 courses for £19.95 at Tower Restaurant on 5pm Dining – book Tower Restaurant here

Hand-dived scallops with skordalia mash, crispy ham and bouillabaisse sauce.
Hand-dived scallops with skordalia mash, crispy ham and bouillabaisse sauce.