Jamie Who is a blog about everything. Except current affairs. And politics. Also science, sport, religion, celebrities, movies, media and marketing, technology, business and design. So...basically Jamie Who is a blog about food. All things food.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Crayfish and roast chicken salad

This salad is a showstopper. It looks amazing on the plate, tastes beautiful and isn't really very difficult to prepare. It's perfect for a dinner party because (a) Your guests will think you're pretty special and (b) You can do it all before they arrive and then simply plate it up when you need to.

I got the idea for this from Kylie Kwong and then just tweaked it a bit. Her website is http://www.kyliekwong.org/. Check her out, her food is awesome.

Ok, stuff you'll need to serve 8 people:

  • 3 crayfish (Obviously live is best but if not the fresher the better.) If you can't get Crayfish get a few high-quality prawns.

  • A chicken that has been roasted and then shredded

  • A pack of asparagus

  • A packet of rocket/watercress/mixed leaves

  • A packet of baby spinach

  • Half a finely diced red onion

  • About 3 teaspoons of good Dijon mustard

  • Sea salt

  • Extra virgin Olive Oil

  • Freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • White wine vinegar

  • Chopped parsley

1. Alright, so you take your crayfish if they are alive and put them in the freezer for one hour. This will "put them to sleep". After that, place them in a large pot of salted boiling water and cook for 5 minutes. DO NOT OVERCOOK THEM!! Remove them carefully with tongs and let them cool before removing them from their shell. They should be firmish and pink in colour. If they seem undercooked gently fry them in a pan for a minute at most but whatever you do do not overcook them. Once done, gently break the meat into pieces and put aside.

2. Make your dressing for the salad by mixing the onion, mustard, some sea salt, a bit of lemon juice, olive oil (a good amount. Say 5 tablespoons), vinegar and parsley.

3. Cook your asparagus in boiling water for about 5 minutes. Again, do not overcook it. You want it to be firm and bright green. Once you've done this, place the asparagus in some water with ice cubes. This keeps the asparagus a bright green colour.

4. Blitz some baby spinach in a blender with some olive oil. This is for presentation.

5. Plate it up. Arrange mixed leaves on plates and top with cooked asparagus, the crayfish meat and the chicken. Spoon some dressing over each plate and using a spoon dribble some of the bright green liquid from the spinach around the plate.

It's a pretty easy process with impressive looking results. Give it a shot. Don't be scared of the ingredients. The worst thing you can do here is not trust yourself with the crayfish. Overcooked crayfish is terrible and rubbery, but, like all cooking, just keep tasting as you go and trust your instinct. Enjoy.


Jamie Who

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