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Shellfish: cooking times and hints

Shellfish: cooking times and hints

Back from shellfish gathering or from the market, it is time to cook!

Langoustines (Dublin Bay Prawns)

500 ml of water and a handful of coarse seasalt.
Heat the water in a large casserole pot and, when it's bubbling nicely, plunge in the langoustines. Let the water come back to the boil, then continue to cook for two more minutes. Turn off the heat and drain off the water, and they're ready to serve!

Pink Prawns

750 ml of water.
Make up into a stock, lightly salted, bring it to the boil then plunge in the prawns. As soon as its comes back to the boil, give it another 30 to 60 seconds then turn off the heat, drain off the water, and spread the prawns out on a clean tea-towel. One hour before eating, sprinkle them with a little fine salt, cover them again with the tea-towel and shake them - this helps to shell them more easily at the table.

Lobster

Allow 25 mins per kilo.
Your live lobster should usually have its claws bound with elastic bands. Plunge it into boiling stock. Let it come back to the boil, and cook it for 25 minutes per kilo. take it out with a large skimming ladle once ready, and let it drain before serving. 

Scallops 'Saint-Jacques'

The best way to serve fresh scallops is very lightly cooked, they only really need browning. 
Cut the scallops into two or three escalopes, and pan fry them in a little olive oil for 2-3 minutes on each side. Serve hot with just a pinch of salt and pepper, perhaps with a side dish of rice.

Winkles

The most important thing with winkles (bigorneaux) is to wash them thoroughly until the water runs clear. Next, cover thelm completely with cold water, salted with coarse sea salt. Add pepper and a laurel leaf, a little muscadet and a knob of butter and bring it to the boil. Once it has reached a bubbling boiling point, take them out of the water, drain them and eat them either warm or cold as an apéritif.

Clams

These can be eaten raw or baked.
For stuffed, baked clams: open the raw clams, make a stuffing of butter, garlic and parsley, and cover the open clam completely with this mixture. Place them in the oven and cook them until the butter begins to brown. 

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