September is here and our Independence's celebration day is only around the corner. This year, our celebrations are different. There is grief and lots of questions with no answers in many Chilean hearts. Only a couple weeks ago Chile got hit hard by a terrible accident. A plane crashed into the Pacific Ocean while was trying to land at Isla Juan Fernandez. As a result, 21 persons died. Sweet people that were working on the island's recovery from the earthquake and tsunami. Intense and extreme efforts have been made to recover them from the deep waters. When we heard the words "no survivors" it was like the a bad nightmare that we wanted so bad to wake up. A few weeks later, our hearts remain with grief, a grief that only God can heal and gives us hope of better days ahead. We pray that His name would receive great glory from this tragedy and the Chilean people can learn, grow and heal from this painful experience.
1 bag of frozen baby scallops, defrosted
1 bag of frozen raw shrimp, peeled and deveined, defrosted
2 cups of baguette crumbs (see directions first)
1 cup of milk or seafood stock
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 sweet onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tspn. paprika
2 sprigs of thyme
1/2 cup white dry wine
1/2 cup heavy whip cream
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup shredded Monterrey Jack cheese
a little squirt of lemon juice
1 small bunch of fresh cilantro or parsley, chopped
Salt & Pepper to taste
Preheat your oven to 400ºF. Grease a pie plate and set aside.
With the help of a sharp knife, take the crust off your baguette. Cut into squares and process in a food processor until very coarse texture (small size peas). Put into a medium bowl and add milk (or seafood stock), about 1 to 1/2 cups and let it rest for a few minutes. (The idea is that the bread will soak most of the liquid while it rests).
In a big pan, heat the olive oil, then add the onions, garlic cloves and sweat for about 5 minutes (they will look soft and translucent). Add the condiments (paprika, thyme, salt and pepper). Stir and cook for one minute. Slowly add the wine and let it reduce. Then squeeze some of the liquid from the soaked bread and toss the solids in the pan. Keep stirring, until it resembles a paste. Add the heavy whip cream and let it reduce too. Add the cheeses and cook until fully incorporated and melted. Add the seafood (shrimp and scallops). Stir until well combined. Finally, add lemon juice, cilantro and re season if necessary.
Bake until bubbly and golden on top (about 15 to 20 minutes).
Serve with baguette slices :) Viva Chile!