On the ninth day of Chefmas, Colin McGurran gave to me…
Colin McGurran, head chef at the gorgeous Winteringham Fields, shares one of his favourite recipes. For a crowd pleaser to really wow your guests this Christmas or New Year’s party, this recipe is worth the time…
For the lobster
Knob of butter
½ lemon, juiced
Vegetable oil, for frying
Maldon sea salt, to season
For the sauce
1 whole chilli
3 lemongrass stalks
50g macadamia nuts
3 garlic cloves
1 tin coconut milk
2 litres lobster stock
10 kaffir lime leaves
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp curry powder
1 tsp garam masala
Salt, to season
For the beetroot
6 golden beetroots
6 raw candied beetroots
For the pickle
500ml white wine vinegar
6 coriander seeds
6 fennel seeds
6 white peppercorns
2 sprigs of thyme
1 bay leaf
1 garlic clove
For the orange gel
6g agar agar for every 500ml of juice
Preparing the lobster
- Have boiling water and iced water ready before starting. Use chopping board with cloth underneath for safety.
- With large cook’s knife, kill the lobster by forcing the knife through the head, pulling it down until the heel hits the board and goes right through the lobster.
- Twist off claws into tray then twist off tails. Blanch in boiling water for 12 seconds then straight into iced water. Put claws in water bath at 50°c for one hour.
- After one hour, take out claws one at a time. Break shell with back of a cook’s knife. Pull out claw in one piece, put into a J-cloth and allow to dry completely so it’s not full of water when it’s time to vacuum pack it.
- With scissors, cut down lobster tails and snap shells back to release tail. Pull out in one piece and lay on tray with a J-cloth. Take out waste pipe then coral. Vacuum pack coral down for later to make butters or dressings.
- Vacuum pack claws and tails. Pull out legs and clean heads.
Cooking the lobster
- Bring lobster tail to room temperature. Take medium frying pan with oil and heat on medium heat.
- Place tail on its back, season with a good helping of Maldon sea salt and fry until a deep roasted red colour. Turn over, add in butter and squeeze of lemon juice.
- Place in butter bath at 45°c for ten minutes. Take out, slice and serve.
Preparing the laksa sauce
- Peel and thinly chop shallots, garlic and ginger. Chop and add fennel, chilli and lemongrass. Sweat this all down until cooked. Season with a little salt. Chop and add tomato.
- Toast macadamia nuts, add to dried spices and cook for a few minutes. Add coconut milk, lobster stock and bring to simmer. Blitz in blender and pass. Infuse coriander and kaffir lime leaves in mixture for 30 mins and pass through fine sieve.
Preparing the pickle
- Add all ingredients in a pan and bring to the boil for 4 minutes to just thicken pickle. Once cool pass through chinois or fine sieve.
- Slice raw candied beetroots thinly, cut golden beetroots into discs and keep covered in lemon water.
- Wash and vacuum pack beetroots with a little salt. Steam at 100°c for 40 mins. Cool down and keep in cold pickling liquid.
Making the orange gel
- Zest oranges and squeeze juice in separate container. Blanch peelings in water for two minutes and put into ice water. Repeat this four times to get rid of a lot of the bitterness.
- Add peelings to juice and blitz until smooth. Add orange to a pan with agar agar.
- Bring to boil continuously whisking and allow to set at room temperature. Once set, blitz again in blender until smooth, pass through sieve again, ready to go in purée bottle.
- Spoon laksa onto plate and add lobster. Arrange beetroot slices on and around lobster as the picture shows. Add three generous dots of orange gel.