Crayfish salad with warm Black Tea-Gooseberry-and Wasabi butter sauce
6 legally sized, legally sourced fresh crayfish
10 tea bags best- quality black tea
2 cans of beer (personally I like the dark Belgium beer for this)
2 avocados, ripe but firm, cut into 0.5cm lengths and sprinkled with the juice of 1 lemon to keep the colour
2 handfuls fresh basil
10ml extra virgin olive oil
For the sauce
130g butter, clarified is preferable
5 top- quality black tea tea bags
1 Tbsp Namida® Wasabi Paste made from Namida® 100% Pure Wasabi Powder
50ml balsamic reduction (see note).
- Place a large stock pot on the stove with a round trivet inside.
- Pour in the beers and tea bags and bring to a boil, lid on.
- Use a pair of tongs and place the crayfish into the pot and settle them onto that trivet.
- **Put the lid on, and hold into down until silence ensues. Time about six minutes from the moment of silence, or wait until the crayfish are bright red.
- In a basin, pull the heads off and slit the tail down the centre.
- Take the flesh out, keeping the tail intact.
- Slit down the centre of the flesh, and remove the entails.
- Set aside.
- Blanch the broccoli until just tender and plunge into ice water to refresh.
- Halve all the gooseberries for the salad.
For the sauce:
- Bring the tea bags to boil with 200ml water and boil until about 30ml remains.
- Melt the butter in the saucepan and strain in the tea bag mixture (removing the tea bags first :)), along with the Namida® Wasabi Paste, balsamic reduction, honey and half of the gooseberries.
- Whisk well, and keep warm until ready to serve.
- To serve, you can heat up the crayfish tails a little in the same steam- contraption, or leave them cold.
- Drizzle with olive oil to moisten, and season with sea salt.
- On a platter, arrange the broccoli and avocado slices, scatter the basil leaves and top with the crayfish tails (cut them in half if you like) and the remaining gooseberries.
- Drizzle with a touch of olive oil and some of the butter sauce.
- Serve the rest in a sauce boat.
*Balsamic reduction is as easy as buying a bottle of balsamic vinegar, and reducing it on a hot stove until drizzling consistency. Test by putting a splodge on a plate in the freezer for a minute. Be careful. It over- reduces easily. You can buy this from supermarkets instead of doing your own.
**If you don’t want to kill the crayfish yourself, then buy the crayfish tails from your favourite retailer and allow them to soak in the beer and tea bag mixture for an hour before serving. Dry the tails by patting with a cloth before placing in platter.
***I prefer using apricots as they are not as tart as gooseberries. For the sauce, puree the apricots before adding.