ScubaChef®

Meet Trevor Cook, the Scuba Chef for California Diving News.

Trevor CookHis monthly recipe column is a celebration of the bounty of sustainable California seafood. After graduating from the Le Cordon Bleu, Trevor began his career in Foodservice as the Banquet Chef at the Omni Hotel in San Diego, CA. From there he created and ran a small catering company in San Diego, and after five years took his career on another path as the Executive Chef of 21 Ocean Front. Trevor joined the Culinary Services Team of U.S. Foodservice as territory manager and Division Executive Chef, where among other things he played a key role in the innovation and marketing of US Foodservice signature brands. Today he works with restaurants at SYSCO Foodservice. Away from his day Job working with restaurants, you can find Chef Trevor Cook diving the coastal waters off Southern California in search of delicious sea food and developing new and exciting ways for you to prepare and cook the bounty of our waters.

His motto, ‘Stay safe, stay legal and never take more than you’ll eat.’

Sophisticated, But Simple Seared Halibut With a Sauce of Fresh Sage Chiffonade, Brown Butter and Toasted Almonds 

Halibut is a favorite of many seafood lovers because of its mild flavor. The meat has a firm, large flake. I suggest pan searing halibut rather than grilling it. If you decide to grill it, remove filets from the grill when still slightly undercooked and cover with foil for several minutes before serving; the retained heat will allow the fish to finish cooking while keeping it moist and tender. One of my favorite go-to sauces is a fresh sage chiffonade with brown butter and toasted almonds. Don’t […]

Rocking the Rockfish: Baja-Style “Pescado Frito” 

Yields 6 servings Ingredients: 1 5-lb. Pacific rockfish 4 cups peanut oil 2 cups all-purpose flour 1 Tbs. Old Bay seasoning Salt and pepper to taste   Directions: Clean the fish, removing the scales and internal organs. Using kitchen shears, lift the gill plate and carefully cut out the entire cluster of gills on each side of the fish. Rinse and pat dry inside and out with paper towels. With a sharp knife, on each side of the fish’s body make 4-5 deep slices into the flesh, from […]

Kiwi’d Pacific Rock Scallops and Sushi

One of my favorite ways to enjoy Pacific rock scallops is to pair them with other treasures from the sea like yellowtail and ahi tuna for an amazing sushi trio. This month we’ll take the rock scallop to another level as serve it on fresh Kiwi fruit with a drizzle of spicy chili ponzu vinaigrette. Remember, “Always ‘Stay Legal,’ and never take more than you’ll eat.” ~ Trevor Cook, Scuba Chef Yields 4 servings Ingredients: 12 large Pacific rock scallops 1 1-pound yellowtail tuna filet, […]

Honey-Glazed Chinook Salmon

When my own underwater hunt returns no bounty and there’s a wild king salmon “run” on, I’ll purchase fresh king salmon (also called Chinook) at a local fish market. It’s rich in healthful Omega-3 oil and the tender, flaky meat offers a lot of flavor. Here we’ll mix a few simple ingredients together for an Asian-inspired dish with a sweet and spicy flair. Remember, “Always ‘Stay Legal,’ and never take more than you’ll eat.” ~Trevor Cook, Scuba Chef Yields 4 servings Ingredients: 4 6-8 ounce […]

Tuscan-style King Crab Panzanella

Scuba Chef King Crab

I love king crab and it’s often on sale this time of year. This Tuscan-style panzanella recipe can be enjoyed as a main course, side dish or as an appetizer — it’s a colorful dish that uses a few fresh ingredients and takes just minutes to prepare. This recipe calls for king crab but you can go crazy and top it with anything from grilled calico bass to broiled lobster chunks. Remember, “Always ‘Stay Legal,’ and never take more than you’ll eat.” ~ Trevor Cook, […]

Classic Crab Dip

Classic Crab Dip

I love Dungeness crab found in our local waters, but every now and then I also like to create recipes using crabmeat from the East Coast’s predominant species, the Atlantic blue crab. There are many variations of the classic crab dip appetizer often served at cocktail parties. I hope you’ll enjoy my version, which features creamy Swiss and Parmesan cheeses, fresh herbs and cayenne pepper for a bit of heat. Remember, “Always ‘Stay Legal,’ and never take more than you’ll eat.” ~ Trevor Cook, Scuba […]

A “Happy Accident” – The Lobster Chimichanga

Lobster Chimichanga

Sometimes mistakes turn out to be “happy accidents.” Take the chimichanga, for instance. One of its origin stories is that many years ago the chef at an Arizona El Charro restaurant dropped a burrito in the deep fryer by accident; when he noticed his mistake he used the made-up swear word, “chimichanga.” And we’ve been savoring his culinary mishap ever since. Since I still had some lobster tails in the freezer from last season’s hunting, I intentionally put a seafood spin on the classic deep-fried […]

Savory Scallop-Stuffed Mushrooms

Savory Scallop-Stuffed Mushrooms

Two of my favorite foods are scallops and mushrooms. Here I bring them together in perfect harmony, paired with smoky bacon, Parmesan cheese and fresh, savory herbs. My scallop-stuffed mushrooms are perfect as an appetizer or when served with a fresh salad can be a light summertime meal. “Remember, “Always ‘Stay Legal,’ and never take more than you’ll eat.” ~Trevor Cook, Scuba Chef   Yields 4 servings Ingredients: 1 lb. fresh rock scallops, diced 12 medium baby portabella mushrooms, with stems and gills removed 4-5 […]

Tasty Yellowtail Taquitos

Tasty Yellowtail Taquitos

I’ll never forget a hunting trip to the outer Channel Islands on a day when the water was 71 degrees and yellowtail were zipping around in the kelp forest and enjoying the shade directly under our dive boat. A strong current made the hunt a bit challenging, but I camouflaged myself in the kelp and it wasn’t long before I got a clear shot of a nice-sized yellowtail. This versatile fish turned out to be perfect for the taquito recipe you see here. “Remember, “Always […]

“Breakfast Anytime” Crab Eggs Benedict

Crab Eggs Benedict

When it comes to the topic of breakfast for dinner, it seems there are two types of people. One says, “Breakfast is to be served only in the morning. Period.” The other says, “Breakfast? I love breakfast. Anytime.” I’ve developed a hearty “breakfast anytime” dish – crab eggs Benedict with an herbed Hollandaise — that I hope you’ll agree is a delicious meal, day or night. Remember, “Always ‘Stay Legal,’ and never take more than you’ll eat.” ~ Trevor Cook, Scuba Chef   Yields 4 […]

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