Mini Diver Scallop Tostadas
PANAMA HOTEL AND RESTAURANT, SAN RAFAEL
CHEF DAN MILLER
These mini-tostadas are one of the most popular appetizers on the
menu at the Panama Hotel and Restaurant, and we understand why.
Light, fresh and colorful, they look like a party on a plate, and their
flavor does not disappoint, with caramelized sweet scallops nestled
between fresh tomato salsa and guacamole. At the restaurant, chef
Dan Miller fries fresh tortillas to make the tostadas. You can skip this
step and purchase round unsalted tortilla chips.
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon finely minced parsley
½ teaspoon sweet paprika
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
10 large scallops (same size as the
chips), cut in half horizontally
Cherry Tomato Salsa
8 ounces grape or cherry tomatoes
¼ medium red onion
1 serrano chile pepper, seeds and
L cup finely chopped cilantro
1 clove garlic, minced
Juice of 2 limes
½ tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 ripe avocados
½ serrano pepper, seeds and
membrane removed, finely chopped
¼ medium red onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
1 clove garlic, minced
Pinch of garlic powder
20 small fresh corn tortillas
(or round tortilla chips)
FOR SCALLOPS: Whisk the garlic, oil, parsley, paprika, salt and pepper in a bowl.
Add the scallops and turn to coat. Marinate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
Remove from the marinade and pat dry. Sear or grill the scallops over medium-high heat, being careful not to overcook.
FOR SALSA: Finely dice and chop the tomatoes, onion and serrano pepper in uniform
pieces. Combine in a bowl with the remaining salsa ingredients and stir to blend.
FOR GUACAMOLE: Combine the guacamole ingredients in a bowl, and mash with
a fork to blend. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
FOR CHIPS: Use 1½-inch biscuit cutter or cookie cutter to cut 20 round tortillas
chips. Fry until crisp, making sure to keep them as flat as possible. (Alternatively,
purchase round unsalted tortilla chips.)
Spread a thin layer of guacamole on a tortilla chip. Place a scallop over the
guacamole and top with a spoonful of salsa. Garnish with microgreens or chopped
cilantro. Serve immediately.
Do-ahead: The salsa and guacamole may be prepared and refrigerated up to 6 hours in
advance. Lay a piece of plastic on top of the guacamole to prevent discoloration.
MAKES 20 MINI-TOSTADAS
Duck Confit Tacos
MARINITAS, SAN ANSELMO, CHEF FRANK VILLA
Rich, meaty duck is perfect for the holidays, especially when it’s
dusted with a heady chile rub and coated in a feisty mole. Marinitas
chef Frank Villa serves the duck confit with tacos. We’ve adapted the
recipe for appetizer portions to be served on round unsalted tortilla
chips. Duck legs and duck fat may be purchased at Belcampo or
any well-stocked supermarket butcher. The mole ingredients can be
sourced at Mi Pueblo in San Rafael, and many supermarkets carry
dried chiles in their international section. If you are short on time,
you can purchase premade duck confit at Belcampo in Larkspur and
proceed with making the mole (but we encourage you to try the recipe
for the confit — it’s delicious).
MAKES ABOU T 24 MINI TOSTADAS
2 dried chiles de arbol, toasted
2 bay leaves
1 (2-inch) cinnamon stick
½ teaspoon black peppercorns
1½ tablespoons kosher salt
½ tablespoon ancho chile powder
½ tablespoon guajillo chile powder
3 duck legs, with skin and bone
1 quart duck fat
7 dried cascabel chiles
2 to 3 dried ancho chiles
2 cloves garlic
½ ripe plantain
¼ medium yellow onion
1½ tablespoons pumpkin seeds
¼ cup water
1 tablespoon kosher salt
½ small head green cabbage, finely
shredded, about 2 cups
1 medium carrot, peeled,
½ cup cilantro sprigs, chopped, plus
extra leaves for garnish
2 tablespoons chopped pickled
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
¼ teaspoon salt
V teaspoon freshly ground
FOR DUCK CONFIT: In a mortar and pestle, grind the chiles de arbol, cloves, bay
leaves, cinnamon stick and black peppercorns. Mix in the salt and chile powders.
Dust the duck legs with the spices and refrigerate on a sheet pan for 24 hours.
Preheat the oven to 300°F. Place the duck fat in a Dutch oven and bring to a boil.
Submerge the duck legs in the fat, transfer the Dutch oven to the oven and cook
for 1½ hours. Remove and cool the duck legs completely.
FOR MOLE: Toast the chiles, garlic, plantain, onion and pumpkin seeds in a sauté
pan over medium heat for 5 minutes. (Add a teaspoon of vegetable oil if the
ingredients begin to stick to the pan.) Transfer to a food processor or blender,
add the water and salt, and process until smooth.
FOR SLAW: Combine the slaw ingredients in a bowl, stir to blend and taste
Shred the duck meat and sear in a saucepan over high heat until crispy. Toss
with enough mole to coat, then taste and add more mole if desired (you will not
use all of the mole for this recipe — save any remaining mole for another use).
Mound the duck on mini tostadas or tortillas and top with the slaw. Garnish with
cilantro leaves and serve immediately.
Do-ahead: The duck confit and mole sauce may be prepared up to 2 days in advance.