Home >> Munchin' >> Black ink risotto & bacalao recipes for Lent

It is Good Friday now for Catholics in the Philippines and the time is usually associated with fasting or abstaining from meat. Fish, seafood, vegetables and the occasional hunger are the order of the day.

Anyway, am sharing here a rather belated post about the Spanish cooking class I attended at The Maya Kitchen mid-March. On the podium was Spanish chef Chele Santiago who lords it over one of Manila’s celebrated culinary kitchens, Gallery VASK in Bonifacio Global City. It is rather expensive to dine at Vask, but those who attended this class took the shortcut. We got to see a former Michelin resto chef in action and got to sample his dishes without the hefty price tag. Haha.

Chef Chele in action

The black ink risotto with seared scallops was utterly delish. I prefer this to paella negra anytime. This looks like a gourmet treat but at the end of this post, the chef kindly shared his recipe on how to make this at home.

Scallops & black ink risotto

The salty bacalao (codfish) is rather popular during the no-meat Holy Week and we often make it into the a la Viscaina version or stew with potatoes, capers, peppers etc.

Chef Chele demonstrated another variation on how to cook the codfish via his Bacalao al Pil Pil con Pipperada (or pepper sauce).


Pulpo a la Gallega or Galician Octopus is a must-try when you’re in the food paradise that is Spain. In this dish, the octopus is not tough at all…it is very tender and the exquisite flavors come out just by combining with oil, salt, and paprika.

This is the traditional version of Pulpo a la Gallega that Chef Chele made. The octopus is topped on a bed of sliced, boiled potatoes. I like this too.


His modern Pulpo a la Gallega uses the same ingredients, but this time utilizing potato foam instead of sliced potatoes. Am not sharing the recipe anymore since it’s for a master class 🙂

Pulpo a la Gallega

As promised, here’s the recipe for Scallops & Black Ink Risotto good for 10 persons –


100 grams Parmesan Cheese Grated
50 grams Black Ink
600 grams Carnaroli rice
80 grams Asparagus
100 grams Dried Tomato
300 grams White onion Julienned
100 grams Cream
50 ml Olive Oil
200 ml Shrimp Stock

Procedure –

Slice onions into julienne, chop dried tomato and asparagus into brunoise.

Saute the onions first until it caramelizes. Add the asparagus and dried tomato,
and continue to saute. Add the rice, saute for a while. Add stock covering the rice.

Continue stirring the risotto. If you need more stock add stock.

Add parmesan cheese and a little cream. Continue stirring the risotto until the rice is al dente.

Parmesan Chips (1 pax)
10 grams Parmesan

– Grate parmesan. Put parmesan on a silpat baked for around 2 mins at 160C. Remove when crispy, set aside.


100 grams Scallops

Procedure –
Season scallops with salt and sear. Transfer into tray and put in the oven at 180’c for 2 minutes.

Plating:(1 pax)

5 grams Asparagus Shaved
1 ml Olive oil Extra Virgin
Arrange nicely the risotto on the bottom of plate. Top with scallop,shaved asparagus and parmesan chips.

Cooking tip: Octopus, bacalao loins, halibut, softshell crab and other hard-to-find imported seafood products are available from Mida Food Distributors at Tel. No. (+63 2) 524 0006 , find them on Facebook or visit www.midafood.com

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This blog is my own happy place where I've written on a sundry of topics since 2004. Am an entrepreneur and busy mom who's passionate about travel, food and fitness. Email me at annalyn.jusay@gmail.com for inquiries & collaborations....thank you!

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