In a Pickle

Often overlooked as a simple piece of garnish (as used in our Long Satay and our Honey Roasted Pigeon dishes), pickled vegetables offer a fresh crunchy, salty and sour taste that is great to open a meal with, especially with a pre-dinner chilled glass of Sherry :biggrin: .

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Using firm fresh vegetables ensures that they retain their texture. Cauliflower florets, mini carrots, mini courgettes can keep for some time in the liquid.

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Other softer ingredients such as large courgettes and cucumbers are best used within a few days. The chilli is really there as a garnish and diners are advised that they eat it at their peril! (though that hasn’t stopped some people! :pinch: )

On a less spicy note, we had a huge delivery of ripe avocados this week and quickly put them to use.

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A simple Guacamole is enhanced with a dash of Sriracha and served as an Amuse Bouche. This went down well with the diners and even better with the staff! :biggrin:

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Later in the week I had the pleasure of preparing a special tasting menu. One of the dishes involved lobster. I am a big fan of raw seafood, and when the crustacean arrived, I knew that it had to be served raw. In the past I have served Lobster Sashimi, so this time I wanted to do something a little different.

The lobster was killed quickly and its meat removed from the tail which was then plunged in to iced water to “crisp up” before being cut up “Tartare” style in to small cubes. It was them drizzled with a dressing made from grated garlic and ginger, Japanese soy sauce, Sake, Lemon and lime juice and a dash of sesame oil.

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The rest of the lobster was used in one of our seafood stocks, nothing goes to waste in my kitchen! :angel:

Lobster is on my list of favourite ingredients, which includes Caviar and Truffles. (yes, I´m spoilt! :happy: )

The truffles we buy are shared between the various restaurants, and a little goes a long way.

White truffles are made in to a luxurious spread and served on toast.

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Our 30 minute cured mackerel (15 minutes in salt and 15 minutes in rice vinegar) tops our rather expensive toasts. The mackerel once cured for this short amount of time doesn’t have a salty or “cure cooked” texture, in fact the texture is very similar to its raw state, lovely and meltingly soft. :biggrin:

Once all the white truffles were used up, I moved on to the black ones. Truffles and eggs have a very long partnership. Its funny how something so rich and expensive can be paired up with something cheap, something that most of us eat everyday and take for granted.

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Using hen´s eggs would make the dish too big and filling, therefore quail eggs were fried and drizzled with a black truffle, oil and soy sauce . Just “pop it in to your mouth”. :biggrin:

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2 thoughts on “In a Pickle

  1. I love your approach and your waste not, want not practices. I’d really love to see how black truffle and soy taste together! What kind of soy would you use and what proportions of black truffle oil to soy?
    Thanks! I’ll be back.

  2. Hi Lynne, and thanks for your comment.

    We use Kikkoman Soy Sauce, and it really depends on personal taste of how much Truffle Oil is used. Some people find the aroma overwhelming, I personally love it!! :biggrin:

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