If ever you find yourself one March midnight on the banks of the River Parret on the Somerset Levels and you see lots of shadowy figures with strange nets loafing about, you will know that the elvers (young eels) are running. And should you be lucky enough to acquire some, this is how you cook them – it’s truly delicious! Be warned, however, that this is not a recipe for the squeamish.
I am sorry to tell you that you must kill the elvers by dropping them into boiling water for a second or two. Then drain and dry them carefully.
Melt a big knob of butter in a large frying pan. Whisk the eggs as for an omelette, add the elvers and tip the lot into the pan. Stir round till the eggs have set. Some like the finished dish to resemble an omelette, others prefer the eggs to be scrambled: the choice is yours, but I recommend the omelette way. Season with salt and pepper and serve with toast or fried bread.
© 1988 Keith Floyd estate. All rights reserved.