Crab & prawn vol-au-vents
HOT TREND: VOL-AU-VENT
Retro revivals are at the forefront of many trends. There’s been a low-level buzz about that 1970s cocktail party classic, the vol-au-vent, for several years now, but Tom Kerridge’s new opening at the Corinthia Hotel in London, Kerridge’s Bar and Grill, has brought the buzz to a roar and taken the vol-au-vent to new heights. Kerridge fills his starter-sized vol-au-vents with a lightly spiced Cornish crab mix, tops them with a rosette of radish and a squidge of avocado and serves them with a jug of intense crab bisque. You’ll also find them on the menu at Piquenique (an early adopter) in Bermondsey, The Duke of Richmond in East London, Trinity in Clapham and Ladurée in Harrods. Think bigger than a party-sized bite and try our recipe as a festive starter.
SERVES 4 PREP 25 mins plus chilling COOK 40 mins EASY
2 sheets ready-rolled puff pastry
1 egg, beaten
For the filling
1 banana shallot, finely chopped
½ tbsp butter
½ tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
½ tsp smoked paprika
¼ tsp soft, dark brown sugar
1 tbsp tomato purée
2 tomatoes (fresh or canned), finely chopped 2 tbsp brandy
200ml fish or chicken stock
125ml double cream small bunch parsley, finely chopped 200g North Atlantic prawns
100g half white, half brown crabmeat
¼ green apple, peeled and finely diced
½ tbsp baby capers, drained and fried in butter 1 tbsp olive oil
1 Unroll both pastry sheets and cut four 10cm circles from each. Lay four circles on a lined baking sheet. Use a 7-8cm cutter to cut smaller circles from the centre of the remaining four. Brush the edges of the whole circles with egg, then carefully place a ring of pastry onto each, making sure the edges match up. 2 ‘Knock up’ the sides of the pastry (to help it rise) by making shallow cuts into the side of the pastry cases at an angle. Use the point of the sharp knife to carefully score around the inside of the ring, but don’t cut all the way through the base. Brush the top of the cases with egg and chill for 30 mins.
3 To make the filling, fry the shallot gently in the butter and oil until it is very soft – this will take about 5 mins. Add the garlic and cook for 1 min. Add the paprika, sugar, tomato purée, tomatoes and brandy and cook for 2 mins over a low heat. Pour in the stock and simmer for 10-15 mins until the stock has almost evaporated. Push the mixture through a sieve into a clean pan and add the cream. Bring back to a simmer for 10 mins until thicker.
4 Meanwhile, heat oven to 200C/220C fan/ gas 6. Cook the vol-au-vents for 10-12 mins or until they are puffed and a shiny dark gold. Stir a little of the parsley into the filling mix, followed by the prawns and the crabmeat, and heat through.
5 Mix the apple, remaining parsley, capers and olive oil. Divide the crab mixture between the vol-au-vents, spooning carefully into the centre of each one, then top with a small amount of the apple and caper mix. Serve the vol-au-vents individually.
GOOD TO KNOW calcium • fibre • vit c • 1 of 5-a-day PER SERVING 840 kcals • fat 53g • saturates 26g • carbs 56g • sugars 6g • fibre 6g • protein 27g • salt 2.7g