The Roanoker - September/October 2014 - 18
R ThE flavOR
Click the photo below or visit TheRoanoker.com/Pomegranate
for a video interview with Chef Alejandro Rivera.
Sundried tomatoes and red onion marmalade can be added to this colorful dish from Alejandro Rivera (left).
Chef Alejandro Rivera wants to encompass something for everyone
when they visit pomegranate restaurant (yes, they like it lowercase).
chef AlejAndro riverA opened half
a dozen restaurants in other states, perfecting
his technique before opening pomegranate
restaurant in Troutville. Rivera prides himself
on the wine selection and pairings, as well
as using local products as often as possible.
The menu is seasonal, desserts are homemade
and every ingredient is used to its full extent.
Pomegranates offer bounty, the insides
plentiful; thus, the name of the restaurant
was born. The building itself used to be a
feed house, and is now one of the few places
in Troutville with live music. Bluegrass, jazz,
rock, country-western - you name it, they've
had a band there play it.
Chef Rivera doesn't have much free time,
but when he does, he still has his restaurant on
the brain. He's involved with two wine clubs,
where he learns even more about pairings.
"In a group format, you can hone your
own skills. Someone can verbalize what you
are trying to put into words. It's almost like
18 SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2014
work because you have to take notes and pay
attention," he says with a laugh.
I was able to taste test Chef Rivera's scallop
recipe and can say with certainty you are going to love this dish! Light and flavorful, it's
one I'll be making in my own kitchen in the
coming months. To learn how to make Chef
Rivera's oven-dried tomatoes and red onion
marmalade, be sure to visit TheRoanoker.
summer tomatoes &
(Three large scallops)
* 3 large scallops
* Diced tomatoes, bacon, garlic and shallots
* 3-4 tablespoons butter
* White wine (chardonnay or other dry
Pat scallops dry, season with salt and pepper (the thicker the scallop, the better the sear
Cut bacon very thin; render in pan over
medium-high heat for fat to liquefy; remove
bacon from pan.
Lower heat to medium and cook scallops
in bacon fat for 1.5-2 minutes on each side;
remove from pan.
Add diced tomatoes, shallots, garlic and
bacon and white wine into pan; simmer. Stir
in butter and turn off heat; sauce will thicken.
Plate scallops (over oven-dried tomato if
desired) with tomato mixture and summer slaw.
* Red and green cabbage, sliced thin
* Olive oil
* Salt and pepper
* Citrus (optional)
Combine ingredients in a mixing bowl
and stir to combine well. Leave uncooked
to add great texture and crunch to the dish.
- liz long