Cooking with Melissa Rodriguez

Carpaccio di Gamberi, Dragoncello, e Polenta Croccante (Live California Spot Prawn with Tarragon & Polenta Crisps)

Spot Prawn Stock

Celery (rough chop) 1 quart
Fennel (rough chop) 1 quart
Onion (rough chop) 1 quart
The Preparation

1. Separate shells/heads from spot prawn meat and reserve spot prawns for later in the recipe. Roast the spot prawn shells in a large pot.

2. Remove the shells after roasted and add all veg, use veg to deglaze the pot.

3. Reintroduce shells into the pot after veg has been roasted.

4. Cover all of the contents of the pot with water.

5. Bring to a boil and reduce to simmer for ~45 minutes, reduce more if necessary.

6. Strain and cool.

Spot Prawn Consommé

Egg Whites 3 ea
Mirepoix 1 cup
Spot Prawn Stock 2 quarts
The Preparation

1. Whip egg whites with mirepoix until foaming.

2. Introduce egg white raft to the cold stock in a 4 qt pot.

3. Slowly bring the stock to a simmer.

4. When the raft has solidified, use a ladle to scoop out the finished product without breaking the raft.

5. The consommé should be passed through a chinois with either cheesecloth or a coffee filter inside.

Spot Prawn Gelee

Gelatin Sheets, Silver Grade 7 ea
The Preparation

1. Soak gelatin sheets in cold water until completely hydrated.

2. Squeeze out all excess water from the gelatin sheets once hydrated, it is important to attempt to get all excess water out as it will dilute the consommé if not done properly.

3. Add sheets to consommé, bring to boil.

4. Once the sheets have dissolved, remove from heat.

5. Pour into thin layer onto a flat tray and let set.

6. Punch out small rings with pastry bag tip. Save scrap pieces to reheat and reset into new tray and repeat process.

Tarragon Oil

Fresh Tarragon (picked) 1 quart
Grapeseed Oil 1 pint
The Preparation

1. Add tarragon and grapeseed oil to vita-prep; blend until the tarragon is broken down.

2. Place into pan and bring to boil for 20 seconds.

3. Pour mixture into a chinois with cheesecloth or coffee filter inside, on top of a container that is sitting on an ice bath so it cools down quickly.

Spot Prawn Oil

Grapeseed Oil 1 qt
The Preparation

1. Grind spot prawn heads with food processor.

2. Gently heat the spot prawn heads with the oil in a pot to extract flavor and color.

3. Strain through cheesecloth or coffee filter and reserve.

Polenta Chips

Instant Polenta 1 pint
Water 1 quart
Olive Oil 1 cup
Butter 20 grams
Salt To taste
The Preparation

1. Add polenta and water into a 4 qt pot and bring to boil. Continuously stir and add more water if need to cook polenta through.

2. When the polenta is cooked, add olive oil slowly while stirring, season. Polenta should be a consistency that is easy to pipe out of a pastry bag.

3. Cool down, put into pastry bag.

4. Once completely cooled, pipe long thin strips onto a silpat and bake until completely dry at 275 F.

5. Cool down.

Spot Prawn Zabaglione

Egg Yolks 8 ea
Spot Prawn Oil To taste
Salt To taste
Lemon To taste
The Preparation

1. Add yolks and stock together and whip until fully combined.

2. Temper egg yolks until the solution reaches desired consistency.

3. Remove from heat and season with lemon juice, salt, and prawn oil.

4. Keep in cup contained in warm water bath until you’re ready to assemble the final dish.

Spot Prawns

The Preparation

1. Peel and remove vein from spot prawns.

2. Bring 2 qt of spot prawn stock to a gentle simmer.

3. Gently poach spot prawn for 10-15 seconds, just until the outside proteins set.

4. Remove and place onto a 2 in hotel pan that is sitting on ice to rapidly cool down.

5. Slice thinly into 1/8th in rounds, place into ring mold in one layer on top of parchment squares.

Final Assembly
Finger Limes to taste
Fennel Pollen to taste
Tarragon Leaves to taste
Coarse Salt to taste
Final Assembly

1. Place a dollop of zabaglione on bottom of plate.

2. Top with portioned spot prawn, squeeze of finger lime, sprinkle of coarse salt, and pinch of fennel pollen on top.

3. Drizzle with spot prawn oil and tarragon oil on top of that.

4. Top with 3 pc of the punched out gelee.

5. Garnish with shiso flowers and tarragon leaves.

6. Finish with polenta chips last minute. Enjoy!