Chef Celeste Gebler reflects:
Earlier in my career … when I had to cook for myself … I created this dish because it only used one pan and it incorporated all of the basic food groups in one meal. Back then all I could afford was chicken, so that is really how it was born. At Luna Bella we use shrimp and scallops because this dish works well with any protein. We believe you eat with your eyes first, and this dish is visually beautiful.
Shrimp and Scallop Rose Marie
- 3 U10-15 shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 2 U10 sea scallops dry packed (not packed in water)
- 8-10 broccoli florets or to taste
- 1 generous tablespoon julienne sun-dried tomatoes
- Romano cheese
- olive oil
- 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
- ½ tablespoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped
- 6 ounces cooked linguine or pasta of choice
- ¼ cup hot pasta water (approximately)
1. Pat scallops dry with paper towel and season lightly with salt and pepper.
2. Season shrimp with salt and pepper.
3. Drizzle a hot sauté pan with olive oil. Place scallops in pan and cook until the scallops release themselves from pan with a golden crusty sear on each side. Remove scallops to keep warm.
4. Lower heat to medium and add more oil to coat pan about ¼ inch.
5. Add broccoli, sun-dried tomatoes, garlic and rosemary. Sauté for a few minutes until vegetables are al dente.
I’m not classically trained -- I just cook and see what works. I started in this business from the bottom up, and I got my love of cooking from my mom. My family would talk, tease and eat over glorious meals.
I met my partner and now fiance, Joe Iacia, in 1996 while working in an Italian restaurant. We realized we had the same values, morals, work ethic and love of this business.
With Joe being from Calabria, Italy, witnessing his mom’s love of cooking and his experience as a butcher, we had the perfect storm for a great restaurant — so we created Luna Bella, which opened in December 2001. With Joe’s Italian heritage and knowledge of Italian cooking and my love of creating and experimenting, our menu includes something for everyone.
At Luna Bella we want our customers to forget about their day, come in and relax.
About Luna Bella Ristorante
Hickory Ridge Village Center, 6420 Freetown Road, Columbia
Monday-Thursday: 11:30 a.m.-9 p.m.; Friday-Saturday, 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sunday, 4-9 p.m. Last seating 15 minutes prior to closing. Monday-Tuesday, half-price on selected bottles of wine. Sunday-Thursday, prix fixe menu, 4 p.m.-closing. Full bar. Kids’ menu.