Crayfish popcorn, seashore salad and crayfish ketchup, by Madalene Bonvini-Hamel

01 July 2011
Crayfish popcorn, seashore salad and crayfish ketchup, by Madalene Bonvini-Hamel

(Serves 6)

for the Crayfish Popcorn
2kg fresh, live medium crayfish
100ml rapeseed oil
1tbs chopped dill
70g popcorn kernels
Ras el hanout
Maldon sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
Sea purslane
Freshly popped and blanched broad beans
Fresh peas, popped and blanched
Pea shoots
Lemon vinaigrette

Blanch the crayfish in rapidly boiling water for 1 minute, dip into iced water, remove the tails from the shells, and make a bisque using the shells.

Pop the popcorn kernels using half the rapeseed oil, season with Maldon sea salt, freshly cracked black pepper and a good pinch of ras el hanout.

Prepare the salad by mixing the broad beans, peas, pea shoots, sea purslane and blanched samphire with lemon vinaigrette. Place into the serving dishes.

Heat a non-stick frying pan with the remaining oil, sauté until golden, season and mix in the chopped dill. Mix with the crushed popcorn and serve on the lemon dressed salad. Serve with a helping of crayfish ketchup on the side.

for the Crayfish Ketchup
500ml crayfish bisque made from the shells
1 large red onion, sliced
1 bulb of fennel, sliced
2 celery sticks, sliced
50g fresh ginger, peeled
2 cloves of garlic crushed
2tbs coriander seeds
1tsp fennel seeds
1 red chilli, deseeded and chopped
50ml rapeseed oil
Small bunch of oregano, stalks and all
1kg over-ripe plum tomatoes, cut in quarters, seeds removed
500g tinned chopped tomatoes
200ml red wine vinegar
80ml Worcester sauce
80g tomato purée
80g dark brown sugar
Maldon sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper

In a large saucepan sweat the onion, celery, fennel, garlic, ginger, chilli, coriander and fennel seeds until golden brown. Add the oregano, tomato purée, Worcester sauce, sugar and vinegar and cook for 5 minutes.

Add all the tomatoes, stir and reduce the heat to a gentle simmer, and season to taste. Simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Put the mixture through a food mill.

Transfer the tomato mix to a clean saucepan and add the crayfish bisque. Bring to a gentle simmer and reduce to the desired consistency (by half is a good measure).

Cool and keep refrigerated until needed.

Madalene Bonvini-Hamel, owner, British Larder pub and restaurant, Bromeswell, Suffolk

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