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Prawn Cocktail Canapes

26 Feb

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Ingredients

For the Marie-Rose sauce 600g Mayonnaise 8 tbsp tomato ketchup A big pinch of cayenne pepper A big squeeze of lemon juice A dash of tabasco sauce A dash of Worcestershire sauce A splash of brandy For the Prawn Cocktail Around 4 baby gem lettuces (or iceberg if you can’t get baby gems.) 750g cooked small peeled prawns Cayenne pepper to taste 200g cucumber Extra Virgin Olive Oil A squeeze of lemon juice Salt and Pepper Method Start off by making your Marie-Rose sauce.  Mix the mayonnaise, ketchup, cayenne, lemon juice, Tabasco and Worcestershire sauce with the brandy in a bowl.  Make sure it’s well mixed.  Taste to check it’s OK and adjust to taste. Small frozen North Atlantic or Scandinavian prawns are much tastier, so I’d recommend you try and get these.  Frozen is best as you know they were frozen as soon as they were caught rather than sitting on a supermarket shelf for days). I think Aldi do some too, they’re in the fridge section in brine. Make sure you de-vein them first if they need it as there’s nothing worse than prawns that haven’t been de-veined, although the small frozen prawns don’t usually need to be de-veined. Here’s a little video that shows you how to do it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K_G-oFywsLk Put the prawns in a bowl and season with salt and pepper and give them a squeeze of lemon juice.  Check the seasoning then set aside. For the salad, chiffonade the lettuce (here’s a link if you’re not sure how to chiffonade) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BhoeBc0JO7Y Then dice your lettuce into quite small dice, leave the skin on but remove watery centre part first and mix with the lettuce in a bowl, next you need to season the salad mix with some extra virgin olive oil and a bit of salt and pepper.  There’s nothing worse than dry, unseasoned salad!  I tend to use Maldon Sea Salt or Cornish Sea Salt Flakes when I’m seasoning salad, in fact when I’m seasoning most things!  It give an extra bit of crunch and tastes better I think. Now you’re ready to put the Prawn Cocktails together.  Get some small glasses, I like the ones I used here which we had on the boat.  But you can use anything similar, make sure it’s glass for visual impact. First put your prawns in, then add some of the salad mix and finish off with a dollop of the Marie Rose Sauce, then sprinkle a little pinch of Cayenne Pepper on top. Serve to guests on a tray or small plate with spoons or small forks and make sure the spoons/forks are long enough to reach to the bottom of the glass!

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Crab Linguine Recipe

25 Feb

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crab linguine recipe, crab, linguine, recipes, cooking,

Crab Linguine Recipe

Serves 4
400g linguine (I used fresh linguine from an Italian Deli in Holland Park)
1tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
1tsp fennel seeds, crushed
1 lemon
200g brown crabmeat (get this from your local fishmonger or M&S do some quite nice crab)
200g white crabmeat
Small bunch of flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped (I used micro cress instead)
Extra virgin olive oil, to finish

Cook the pasta in a large pan of salted boiling water until al dente.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a frying pan over a medium-low heat and fry the garlic, chilli and fennel seeds for a couple of minutes until soft by not coloured. Add the zest of half a lemon and the juice of all of it, and then stir in the brown crabmeat.

Drain the pasta, reserving a few spoonfuls of the cooking water, and toss with the sauce, along with the white crabmeat and parsley. Add the extra water if the dish seems a little dry. Season to taste, and divide between bowls.

It’s good to give the dish height, so if you have tongs lift out the pasta with these, hold the pasta over the serving bowl and twist the bowl as you slowly place the pasta into the bowl to twist it into a mound and give it height.

Drizzle each bowl with a little extra virgin olive oil, and serve immediately.

I then grated some parmesan on top and finished the dish with micro cress (red amaranth and rocket I think). You can buy micro cress in good greengrocers, I know Selfridges Food Halls do it too.