How I love seafood, and we’re getting closer to the time of year where I am able to really enjoy it – straight from the fish shop at the end of the pier where we spend our summer holidays. Roll on, December!!
This recipe is from Mark Best, regularly seen on Australian Masterchef, and chef at the amazing Marque in Sydney.
Although I would have loved to do every element in this dish, I did wimp out on the steaming of the crab. You can be rest assured I will try it in the near future though, so I’ll definitely blog about it then. I bought a couple of packs of it at the supermarket – and although it wasn’t great, it was definitely passable. It just doesn’t look as good on the plate, I’m afraid.
Every element in this recipe is pretty simple, so it’s more time consuming than difficult. If you’re pushed for time, make the Almond Jelly first, as it takes a little while to set in the fridge before you whip it up again. You could also make the popcorn early and give it time to cool down – spread it out on a tray of kitchen towel if you can to prevent it going sweaty.
I must have really been blessed but I managed to get four of the juiciest and sweetest cobs of corn around. They were truly beautiful, and made a very impressive sweetcorn custard, which has got to be the easiest thing out to make. I am almost ashamed to admit, I haven’t bought corn on the cob for ages. Master Three used to like it but has now gone off corn completely, although I can still manage to get creamed corn into him if it’s disguised with something else. He calls it ‘bite it’ because that’s what I used to say to him when I served it to him when it was still on the cob. Mine still had a little bit of texture in it, so it wasn’t a custard per se – but still delicious. I guess if you wanted something incredibly smooth, you could blitz it for a little longer.
My Almond Gazpacho definitely needed thinning out, and I think I should have added more water to it to get a more pourable consistency. As always, I left it in the fridge too long at any rate and should have had it sitting at room temperature for a while to get a little runnier.
I used a lovely sourdough from a gourmet bakery near our house, and in retrospect I should have taken the crusts off – I think this would make a difference to the consistency of the gazpacho and you’d probably end up with something thinner than I had without diluting it too much with water. Next time, I’ll definitely try that.
Mmm, should have checked the liquor cabinet before I went down to Dan Murphy’s!! Bought a new bottle of it (rest asuured, it’s not the most expensive thing in the place – and I kept having John Newcomb flashbacks) only to get home and be told that we had not only one but two bottles of it in the cabinet. So I’ll definitely have to make this again, or maybe use it instead of white wine in a few risottos.
The almond jelly was a little disappointing to be honest – I expected something a little fluffier once it had been butterflied again, but it still tasted pretty good.
Well,this was pretty straightforward to make, although getting the milk solids out of the butter was harder than it should have been – and it’s pretty important that you do it, otherwise your butter will burn…and that’s one of those smells that’s near impossible to get rid of. I think the required quantity of butter is a little too much – my corn kernels were drowned in the butter, and I must admit I thought I had destroyed them – they took forever to pop! Once they did though, there was the smell of the cinema right through the house – you know that butter, salt and popcorn aroma? This is it.
If I were to make this again, I’d turn the popcorn out into a large flat tray lined with some kitchen towel to make it as dry as possible and not go all sweaty.
I was in the rush to get things prepared and of course even though I had the popcorn powder prepared, I forgot to put it on the plate…couldn’t believe it – what a waste!
So, in short – a nice dish. Will I make it again? Not sure, but I’ll be sure to give the crab a crack once I spot them at the pier.