Way back in 1977, my recipes began to show the subtle influence of my travels. One of my first experiments was a crab dish with an avocado salad, grapefruit and ginger. It tasted good - the sweetness of the crab against the bitter grapefruit and the spicy ginger – but I had over-designed the dish. It was too complex and just looked frightful. But this was part of the journey of learning. Today at Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons my crab salad has evolved into two different dishes. They are both modern and exciting to look at and they have magnificent flavours and textures.
Ingredients for the crab salad
white crab meat, fresh
brown crab meat, fresh and chopped slightly
salt, to taste
Ingredients for the brown crab mayonnaise
brown crab meat
olive oil, extra virgin
Ingredients for the grapefruit jelly
pink grapefruit juice
pink grapefruit, chopped segments
cocktail crab claws
pink grapefruit segments, cut into small wedges
micro borage (optional)
Mix all the crab salad ingredients together in a bowl. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Reserve covered in the fridge until required.
In a jug blender add all the ingredients apart from the two oils and blend until smooth. Now combine the two oils into a jug and, on a medium speed, slowly add the oils to the mayonnaise to create an emulsion. Check the seasoning and put into a squeeze bottle.
In a small saucepan bring the grapefruit juice and agar agar to the boil, whisking constantly, then simmer for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool over ice for 2 minutes. Divide the grapefruit pieces between two airline containers and pour over the cooled jelly. Now evenly sprinkle the chilli and chives over the top of the jelly. Put in the fridge to set for a minimum of 2 hours.
To make the celery salad:
Shave celery stalk into 2mm thin slithers, pick out the leaves from the centre of the celery and place in the iced water for 1 hour to firm up. Reserve in the fridge.
Spoon a 4cm strip of the crab mayonnaise down the centre of each plate. Arrange a marinated crab claw to the right-hand side of the plate. Arrange one mound of crab mix to the left of the crab claw. Top the crab mound with a small teaspoon of caviar and pieces of the grapefruit jelly.
Arrange the celery salad along the top of the plate and put the grapefruit segments in and around the celery. Finish with the seaweed salad and micro borage (optional).
THIS RECIPE IS ADAPTED FROM THE BOOK LE MANOIR AUX QUAT'SAISONS: THE STORY OF A MODERN CLASSIC
A personal tour of Raymond's legendary restaurant-hotel through the four seasons, including 120 recipes from his celebrated kitchens. With spectacular photography of the signature dishes, luxurious rooms and ravishing gardens, and beautiful and witty illustrations throughout, the fairy tale of Belmond Le Manoir is brought charmingly to life.