Citrus and pepper sauce, seafood selection from the fire

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Preparation info

  • Serves 8

    main course portions
    • Difficulty

      Medium

Appears in

Mile 8: A book about cooking

Mile 8

By David Higgs

Published 2018

  • About
Marble

Another great recipe from Armando, the soldier. Remember that you should always serve seafood as soon as it’s cooked.

Ingredients

Octopus

  • 500 g octopus – cleaned
  • 7 g salt
  • 4 g ground black pepper
  • 10 g thyme
  • 10 g rosemary
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 g cumin seeds
  • 4 g coriander seeds
  • 20 ml olive oil

Prawns

  • 8 large tiger prawns
  • salt and pepper
  • butter – melted
  • lemon – for squeezing

Seabass

  • 640 g seabass fillets – scaled
  • Maldon sea salt flakes
  • lime – the zest

Mussels

  • 800 g whole mussels
  • 50 ml white wine – optional

Courgettes

  • 4 courgettes – about 240 g
  • olive oil
  • Maldon sea salt flakes

Shaved fennel

Method

Place the cleaned octopus in a vacuum bag with the other ingredients. Vacuum seal and place in a sous vide at 77°C for 5 hours. Alternatively, place the bag in a pot of water and simmer for 4 hours. Once cooked, remove the bag from the water and cool in an ice bath. Remove the octopus from the bag and slice off the tentacles. Season with salt and grill over hot coals until hot enough to serve. Or, place in a griddle pan with olive oil blend and butter for the same result. Squeeze fresh lemon juice over the octopus as you remove it from the heat.

Butterfly the prawns and remove the digestive tract. Season with salt and pepper, then grill, shell side down first. Turn and brush with melted butter. When the flesh is firm and white in colour remove from the grill. Finish with a squeeze of lemon.

Portion the seabass fillets into 8 × 80 g portions. Place the fish on the grill skin side down first, and cook until the flesh begins to change from translucent to white. Turn the fish and grill on the flesh side for a few minutes until just cooked through, being careful not to overcook. Remove from the grill and finish with sea salt flakes and lime zest. Serve as soon as you can.

Clean the mussels by rinsing, scrubbing and removing the beard. Place in a wire basket over the hot coals until they begin to open. Alternatively, place the mussels in a pot with 50 ml white wine. Close the lid of the pot and steam until the mussels open. For safety, discard any mussels that don’t open. Serve as soon as you can.

Wash the courgettes and pat dry on paper towels, and then cut them in half horizontally. Trim the halves on the sides to form a rectangular shape. Brush with olive oil and grill. Sprinkle with sea salt flakes.

Slice the fennel bulbs thinly on a mandolin and place in ice water to curl, and set aside.

To assemble, arrange 50 g octopus, 1 prawn, 80 g seabass and 100 g mussels in a heated soup plate. Place a courgette half and 15 g shaved fennel as you like on the seafood. Add 100 ml citrus and red pepper sauce and 2 black lime slices, and finish the plate with a courgette flower. Serve with a slice of grilled focaccia.