Grilled Langoustine, With Potato and Beef Purée, Corn and Sofrito

You will need to begin this recipe two days ahead.

Ingredients

  • 6 large fresh langoustines, cleaned, heads and shells reserved
  • 200 ml (7 fl oz) grapeseed oil
  • 10 g (¼ oz) annatto seed (achiote) paste
  • 8 coriander (cilantro) stalks
  • 2 limes, zest
  • 40 g ( oz) garlic
  • pinch of ground cumin
  • pinch of curry powder
  • dill, to garnish

Potato and Beef Purée

  • 200 g (7 oz) any first-class cut of beef, such as rib eye
  • 200 ml (7 fl oz) olive oil
  • 20 g (½ oz) annatto seed (achiote) paste
  • 20 g (½ oz) garlic
  • 8 coriander (cilantro) sprigs
  • 5 g (¼ oz) salt
  • 5 g (¼ oz) black pepper
  • wood chips, for smoking
  • 600 g (1 lb 5 oz) waxy potatoes
  • 200 ml (7 fl oz) milk
  • 150 g ( oz) butter

Corn Reduction

  • 1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
  • 350 g (12 oz/ cups) fresh corn kernels
  • 70 g ( oz) butter
  • 1 white onion, peeled, thinly sliced
  • 50 g ( oz) celery stalks, thinly sliced
  • 50 g ( oz) leek, white part only, thinly sliced
  • 10 g (¼ oz) annatto seed (achiote) paste
  • 10 g (¼ oz) tomato paste (concentrated purée)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice, to season
  • 15 g (½ oz) butter, to season

Sofrito

  • 2 g annatto seed (achiote) paste
  • 25 g (1 oz) butter
  • 1 small onion, finely diced
  • 20 g (½ oz) green capsicum (pepper), finely diced
  • ½ garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 10 g (¼ oz) aji dulce (cachucha pepper), finely chopped
  • 50 g ( oz) tomato concasse
  • 2 coriander (cilantro) sprigs, leaves finely chopped
  • 1 parsley sprig, finely chopped

Method

For the potato and beef purée, clean the beef and slice into 2.5 cm (1 inch) pieces. Make a marinade for the beef with the olive oil, annatto seed paste, garlic, coriander, salt and pepper and vacuum seal or place in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside in the refrigerator for at least 2 days.

Preheat a coal-bedded kettle barbecue to low heat and set up for indirect grilling. Add one-quarter of the wood chips around the coals and cook until smoke appears. Place the beef on a rack, cover and smoke, adding extra wood chips as required, until cooked through (30–40 minutes) or the meat reaches 60°C (140°F) internal temperature. Remove from heat and set aside to cool to room temperature. Finely chop 200 g (7 oz) of the beef and set aside for the purée.

Put the potatoes in a large saucepan of boiling water and cook until soft. Pass through a mouli grater, then put in a bowl with the milk, butter and finely chopped beef and stir to combine. Cover and refrigerate until serving.

Meanwhile, combine the langoustines in a bowl with the grapeseed oil, annatto seed paste, coriander stalks, lime zest, garlic, cumin, curry powder and salt and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate overnight to marinate.

To make the corn reduction, heat the grapeseed oil in a pressure cooker. When it is starting to smoke, add the reserved langoustine heads and shells and roast, crushing the shells as they cook. Remove the shells, reduce the heat slightly and add the corn kernels. Caramelise the kernels without burning them then add the butter and remaining ingredients except the seasonings. Add 2 litres (70 fl oz/8 cups) of water and close the pressure cooker, cooking on high heat for 25 minutes.

Let cool at room temperature without opening. After an hour or so all the fat will set on the top of the liquid. Carefully scoop off as much fat as possible, transfer the stock to a large saucepan and reduce to a glaze-like consistency. Finish by seasoning with lemon juice and butter.

For the sofrito, slowly cook the annatto seed paste in the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, capsicum, garlic and aji dulce. Cook until soft and fragrant. Add the tomato concasse, season with salt and pepper and finish with the herbs.

To assemble, grill the marinated langoustines on a barbecue or chargrill. On the centre of each serving plate, place a small amount of the potato and beef purée. Drizzle the corn reduction around it. Place a langoustine on the centre of the purée and top with the sofrito. Finish with a few sprigs of dill.