Sunday, 22 June 2008

Roellinger - a scavenger's curry of oysters

Olivier Roellinger at Maisons de Bricourt in Brittany works closer to the water than the others and is a part of the oyster culture but sometimes features this daring dish on the menu using curry spices for the seasoning, embellishing a teaspoon of basic curry powder, with coriander, powdered saffron, turmeric all spice, cinnamon, dried green mango powder, just the sort of contents that might have spilled off a spice shipment smashed on the rocks off St Malo (but would not be out of place either in India where oysters are given a dry crumb coating seasoned with such spices and then fried or grilled quickly). Roellinger though conservatively uses less than a teaspoon to season his stock reduction.

Oysters with cabbage

Boil half a litre of white wine to reduce its volume, add chicken stock and 2 ml of the spice mix. Infuse 20 minutes. Separate four prime cabbage leaves, poach and then refresh in cold water and set aside. Cut two squid into strips and sear briefly in a non stick pan. Open the oysters and put the liquor in a pan separately
Heat the cabbage leaves in the oyster juice with some butter Reheat the wine and stock infusion, bind it with more butter
Place a cabbage leaf in a warm shallow bowl. Slip the drained oysters into the buttered infusion, which should be warm not boiling. Arrange the oysters in each cabbage leaf. Coat with the infusion, which has been enriched with oyster flavour. Garnish with the salad burnett, nori and lamb's lettuce.