Getting all this in a format suitable for plating was tough. In fact, I'm not convinced this was the best presentation. Actually, I know it's not. It's sloppy and looks too heavy. But oh well! Cooking is sloppy, isn't it? I mean, what's the point of cooking, of learning, of growing as a cook if you can't mess things up...make it look like crap once in a while. Not that it's your goal, but if it happens to occur, live with it!
So I knew I wanted seared scallops and I knew I wanted corn, but building a dish around those two items is easy and tough. Easy in that you can do so many things with scallops or corn. Hard in that you can do so many things with scallops or corn ;).
I originally wanted to do something of a stack with the corn, but I imagined a drier approach with a chopped corn, not whole kernels. I couldn't come up with something for that, so I chose the next best thing - corn cakes.
I'm also really into mushrooms at the moment. Every time I walk into a grocery store these days, I'm checking what they have in stock. On this day, I came across this beautiful little floret of a Maitake mushroom, and instantly knew I had to cook it with olive oil, salt and pepper. In retrospect, I probably should have done some sort of chopped approach to the mushrooms, because that's what really threw this plate off. You have a nice corn cake, you have four seared scallops, you have a nice sauce...then you have this big chunk of a mushroom hanging out on the plate with nowhere to hide. If you try this dish, maybe do everything I did, but then take the mushroom and chop it, and set it on top of the corn cake?
You already know how to do seared scallops, so let's get to the miso-sake sauce and corn cakes.
1 Cup sake
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 Tbs ponzu sauce
1 tsp miso paste
Boil the sake until reduced by half. Add broth and boil for a minute, add ponzu and miso, stirring well. Reduce heat to low and reduce about 10 minutes. Off heat and add 1 Tbs butter, mixing before you use.
1 Cup corn (if you use frozen corn, make sure it's completely defrosted and drained)
1 piece of wheat bread
1 egg white
1/4 shredded parmesan cheese
3 cloves garlic, through a press
In a processor, turn the bread into fine crumbs. Add corn and process until chunk, but not a paste. Scoop out into bowl and add egg white and cheese. Add a bit of salt, pepper, and garlic.
Form into cakes, and pan fry for a couple minutes per side.