Archive of BBC Food Recipes

Warm timbales of scallop mousse with fresh herbs and asparagus

Prep time less than 30 mins
Cook time less than 30 mins
Serves 4
From Saturday Kitchen Best Bites
Equipment and preparation: For this recipe, you’ll need 4 ramekin dishes (approximately 8cm x 4cm/3in x1½in).


  1. Preheat the oven to 160C/325F/Gas 3.

  2. For the mousse, brush the ramekin dishes generously with the butter and sprinkle the inside with the herbs.

  3. Blend the scallops and eggs in a food processor for one minute or until smooth. Add the cream, salt and cayenne pepper and blend for a further minute. Divide the mousse mixture evenly between the ramekins and cover each ramekin with aluminium foil.

  4. Line a roasting tray or a deep ovenproof dish with kitchen paper and place the ramekins on top. Add enough boiling water to come half way up the sides of the ramekins. Place into the oven and cook for about 20-25 minutes. To check if it is cooked, push a fine skewer or the blade of a small knife into the centre for 10 seconds. It should come out completely clean and feel hot. Set aside and keep warm.

  5. For the garnish and sauce, heat the butter in a frying pan and fry the asparagus for 2-4 minutes, or until just tender. Remove half of the asparagus from the pan.

  6. Add the shallot and wine and bring to the boil. Pour in the cream and boil for a further two minutes. Pass the sauce through a fine sieve and into a clean saucepan.

  7. Add the lemon juice, salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Keep warm.

  8. Preheat the grill to high.

  9. Slice the 2 large scallops in half horizontally and drizzle with the oil. Season with salt and cook on a hot grill for 30 seconds on each side. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and keep warm.

  10. Remove the foil from the ramekins, loosen the timbales with a small knife and turn each one out onto a warm plate. Place a slice of grilled scallop on top of the timbales and arrange the asparagus alongside. Drizzle a little sauce on each plate and serve.


For the mousse

  • 15g/½oz soft butter
  • 3 tbsp mixed fresh herbs (tarragon and flatleaf parsley) leaves picked)
  • 150g/5oz scallops, white part only
  • 2 free-range eggs
  • 200ml/7fl oz double cream
  • pinch salt
  • pinch cayenne pepper

For the garnish and sauce

  • 25g/1oz butter
  • 150g/5oz wild or fine asparagus tips
  • 1 small shallot, finely chopped
  • 75ml/3fl oz dry white wine
  • 100ml/3½fl oz double cream
  • ¼ lemon, juice only
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 large scallops, white part only
  • 1 tsp vegetable oil

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