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The Caterer

Conger eel with peas, by Carme Ruscalleda

04 February 2010
Conger eel with peas, by Carme Ruscalleda

This recipe for conger eel with peas comes from Carme Ruscalleda, the world's only five-Michelin-starred female chef.

This dish pays homage to the Maresme spring,with the contrast of sweet and delicate aromas, which mix with the juice of the exceptionally tasty conger eel. It is a seafarer's dish, full of expertise in the combination of sea and garden produce.

See our feature, Carme Ruscalleda - the world's only five-Michelin-starred female chef >>

INGREDIENTS (Serves four)

  • 400g conger eel head
  • 500g of conger eel tail
  • 30ml oil or clarified butter
  • 70g spring onion, chopped
  • Salt

For the stock

  • 1 bulb of garlic
  • Parsley to taste
  • 2 ripe tomatoes
  • 100ml sweet sherry
  • 100ml dry sherry
  • 1.5litres mineral water

For the chopped peas

  • 600g shelled peas
  • 1/4 garlic clove
  • 3 parsley leaves
  • A pinch of flour and salt
  • 4 sweet pea flowers
  • Low-gluten cornflour
  • Extra-virgin olive oil (for frying)
  • 8 slices of conger eel, from the top part, without skin or bones (use tweezers to remove the bones that penetrate the flesh)
  • Salt and white pepper

    METHOD

    Preparing the stock

Fry the sliced head and tail of the conger eel, and season. When it is golden and cooked, add the spring onion and continue cooking.

Cover the fried mixture with the finely chopped garlic, parsley, tomato concasse and both sherries. Cook for four minutes and add the boiling mineral water. Continue cooking on a medium heat for 15 minutes.

Mince the conger eel lightly with a hand-held electric blender and cook for five minutes more. Strain and reserve the stock.

Cooking the peas

Heat 1/2 litre of the stock in a pan. When it is at boiling point, add the peas, cover and cook on a medium heat for two minutes. Add the pea base, finely chopped and crushed in a mortar. Cook for three minutes. Adjust the salt and pepper and remove from the heat for five minutes.

Dust the conger slices with seasoned cornflour (having removed the bones) and fry until they are just cooked.

To serve

Serve the pea juice in deep plates and place the fried conger on top along with a sweet pea flower.

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