A Taste of Bespoke with Arturo Franco-Camacho in New Haven

June 14, 2008

“Day boat scallops smell fresh, like sweet milk,” explained Arturo Franco-Camacho, owner andTB_Arts_Arturo.jpg creative chef of Bespoke (New Haven, CT) as he began his demonstration of porcini encrusted sea scallops served with a cauliflower puree, fava bean shiitake ragout and truffle vinaigrette. The demo was the first stop on the “Elegant American & Contemporary French Masters” restaurant tour at the International Festival of Arts & Ideas.

I stood right behind Arturo so I could attempt to look over his shoulder as he cooked. I tried to jot down each and every action so I could share the details. Here goes:

Porcini Encrusted Sea Scallops Served with a Cauliflower Puree, Fava Bean ShiitakeTB_Arts_Scallop.jpg Ragout and Truffle Vinaigrette

Score (make small cuts in) each scallop, season with salt, and sprinkle each side with porcini dust. (For the dust, pulverize dried porcini mushrooms using a clean coffee grinder.) Sear the scallops in a half canola oil and half clarified butter (butter that’s been melted and separated to remove the milk solids enabling you to cook with it at higher temperatures).

“I like them medium rare,” he said as he placed the seared scallops over a bed of cauliflower puree. Arturo suggested blanching the cauliflower and letting it cool completely before pureeing it. He cautioned not to chill the veggie on ice or the cauliflower could get watery. Arturo suggested thickening it with some cooked potato, if you do end up with a too thin puree.

Arturo tossed the shiitake and oyster mushrooms and fresh fava beans for a quick saute into the hot pan he used for the scallops. Next he made the vinaigrette: he started by adding chopped shallots to the same pan to caramelize them, tossed in some diced peeled and seeded tomato, champagne wine vinegar, Dijon mustard and — the final touch — a few drops of aromatic white truffle oil.

Add a squeeze of fresh lime juice to balance the flavors and/or a pinch of butter to emulsify the warm vinaigrette, he suggested. And always season with salt and pepper. He then tossed in freshly chopped tarragon and chives, drizzled the vinaigrette over the plated food and topped it with frizzled julienned leeks.


Arturo mesmerized the tour group with his demo, which was only topped by the tasting of the scallops. Pure heaven.

After typing this up for you, I’ve decided instead of suggesting you try to make this at home, enjoy this dish along with the hospitality and good service that accompany it at Bespoke.

Bespoke, 266 College Street, New Haven, CT 203.562.4644

Photographs by Robert Hyde

Bespoke on Urbanspoon

4 Comments on “A Taste of Bespoke with Arturo Franco-Camacho in New Haven”

  1. Chekashadow Says:

    Arturo solo quiero decirte que me da muchisimo gusto que te hayas superado de esta manera y dios quiera que se arregle todo ese problema con el restaurante Roomba you need it!….buena suerte!

  2. chekashadow Says:

    Arturo, yo creo que eres un excelente cocinero fijate que no lo dudo, pero …no te da miedo que tener tanto grenero tan loco??? grenas en la comida? Hellooo!!!
    If I was you, I’ll get a good haircut, I am sure you look more cute like Arturo the man I knew back then….good luck!
    Saludos Senora Franco Camacho!

  3. Food and Product Reviews – Sneak Peak of New Haven’s Art & Ideas Festival – Food Blog | Bite of the Best Says:

    [...] and eclectic chefs Jean Pierre Vuillermet of Union League Café, Bun Lai of Miya’s Sushi, Arturo Franco-Camacho of Bespoke, and Denise Appel of Zinc. These “Local Heroes” will discuss how they reinvent the fine food of [...]

  4. Bespoke’s Warm Fig and Cherry Tart | Bite of the Best Says:

    [...] returned to Bespoke (New Haven, CT) with yet another friend, to introduce Arturo Franco-Camacho’s creative [...]

Leave a Comment

Posting Policy

Bite of the Best encourages our readers to comment on and review any products that we write about. Please express your opinions in a mature and civil tone of voice. We will not post rude or otherwise inappropriate material on Bite of the Best. We look forward to your comments and reviews!

9 − = three

< Back to Previous Page