In recent weeks we have covered recipes with Queens as the theme. Last month I did a column about Queen Beatrix abdicating the throne with a Royal Smile cocktail recipe and we have covered Cincinnati Chili from the Queen City. I’ve also written about snowman poop from the Dairy Queen and don’t forget Steve McQueen in my forgettable take off on “The Blob”, done last March.
I recently came across another Queen’s recipe that ignited a Rock & Roll spark in my twisted culinary mind. In the past I have tried to infuse rock music with food. Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme, Goats Head Soup, Queen Latifah, you get the picture.
Over the history of Rock & Roll there have been many examples of rock your socks off bands that have a lost a key member and sadly, the rest of the band just faded away. The Doors and Jim Morrison, the Allman Bros. Band, Little Feet and Big Ken and the Bundogs come to mind. Steve Perry got tired of it all and went into seclusion and Journey, one of the best Rock bands ever was never the same.
Which brings us to the iconic pioneers of stadium rock, Queen. Clever how I incorporated the Queen thing in to this again.
Formed in London in 1971, the band released their debut album in 1973. The release of “Night at the Opera” in 1975 cemented their place in Rock history. The album featured the iconic single “Bohemian Rhapsody”. I still pound the dashboard in my AMC Pacer and bob my head when I hear that one cranked up on my 8-Track player.
The release of “News of the World” in 1977 produced “We Will Rock You” and “We are the Champions”, a couple of tunes that still shake up sports arenas and stadiums.
Queen became one of the biggest stadium Rock bands ever after the release of those two. They became pioneers in Rock Videos and lead singer Freddie Mercury and the boys put on a show regarded as one of the greatest ever at the 1985 “Live Aid” concert.
Freddie Mercury died of complications from AIDS in 1991 and Queen was no longer a force in music. Lead guitarist Brian May still pops up now and then, playing with original drummer Roger Taylor and Paul Rodgers or Adam Lambert. But it was never the same.
This recipe is much like the band. It starts out obscure but builds to screaming crescendo that has a subtle taste. Scallops, like Queen have always been my faves and this recipe reflects great food and majestic Rock & Roll.
The Queen’s Scallops
2 Lbs. Bay Scallops, in the Half Shell and Rinsed
3-4 Slices Prosciutto Ham, Sliced Thinly
2 Cups Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese
2 Cups Pesto
Place a few slices of ham on each scallop along with a few teaspoons of pesto. Sprinkle with cheese and throw shells on a hot grill. Grill until cheese begins to melt and pesto bubbles.
(Note: If you do not have shells you may sauté the scallops for a few minutes in olive oil. Place ham in skillet, stir and spoon pesto over it. Serve the scallops and ham over mixed greens and sprinkle with cheese.)
Rock & Roll will never die.
Rock on everybody.