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Poached South Australian Squid with Octopus and Garlic Custard

Poached South Australian Squid with Octopus and Garlic Custard recipe, brought to you by MiNDFOOD.

Poached South Australian Squid with Octopus and Garlic Custard

RECIPE: Poached South Australian Squid with Octopus and Garlic Custard by Peter Gilmore.

Serves 8

2kg whole southern squid

1x 500g octopus

8 red-core radishes

500ml clarified butter

24 small cherry bell radishes

16 sweet violets

16 native violets

24 rosemary flowers

24 society garlic flowers

24 radish flowers

16 pea flowers

sea salt

For the roasted squid consomme

500g chicken wings

500g squid trimmings

½ small brown onion

1 carrot

1 stick celery

50ml grapeseed oil

100g unsalted butter

300ml sake

3 litres water

For the raft

250g chicken breast meat

100g squid trimmings

1 carrot

½ onion

1 clove garlic

1 celery stick

6 egg whites

For the garlic custard

20g unsalted butter

3 small cloves garlic

380ml full-cream milk

1 whole egg

3 egg yolks

sea salt

1 Remove tentacles, head and intestines from squid. Reserve tentacles and discard head and intestines. Cut squid tubes in half lengthways and spread them out. With a clean kitchen towel, rub off all the skin. Cut squid into even rectangles. Reserve the trimmings. Using a sharp, flexible filleting knife, cut squid horizontally into thin strips of about 1mm. Each rectangle should yield 6 to seven strips. Each strip is then cut into 1cm-thick ribbons. This is a highly skilled technique. If you find it too difficult, the squid rectangles can simply be julienned into fine strips. Refrigerate until required.

2 For the consomme, chop chicken wings into small pieces using a cleaver. Slice squid trimmings roughly and keep tentacles whole. Peel and chop onion, carrot and celery. In a heavy-based saucepan, heat grapeseed oil. When the pan is hot, add chicken wings and squid trimmings. Roast wings and squid until they are nicely browned. Add butter and vegetables and continue to brown for another 4 or 5 minutes. Use a wooden spoon continuously until ingredients are well coloured. Add sake and reduce on a high heat until virtually no liquid remains. Add cold water and simmer on a low heat for 2½ hours. Strain and reserve stock. Remove fat from the surface with a ladle. You should have 1½ litres of stock after cooking.

3 For the raft, combine chicken breast meat, squid, peeled carrot, garlic, onion and celery in a food processor and process until mixed. In a separate bowl, lightly whisk egg whites until soft peaks form. Combine egg white and chicken vegetable mix. Place strained stock in a clean saucepan on a low heat. Vigorously whisk the raft into the stock then increase the heat and allow stock to come to a simmer point. The raft will form a solid mass at the top of your stock. Turn the heat down to the lowest possible setting; you want the liquid to be ticking over just under the raft. Do not stir raft again at this point. You can make a small hole to see this is happening. Leave on the lowest possible heat for about 30 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and carefully strain stock through a muslin cloth without breaking raft up too much. A ladle is useful for this process. Once the stock is strained, you should have an intensely flavoured squid and chicken consomme. Refrigerate until later.

4 For the garlic custard, melt butter in a small saucepan and chop garlic roughly. Gently sweat garlic in butter but do not allow to colour. Add milk and bring the liquid to the point just before a simmer (about 90˚C). Remove the pot from the heat and allow garlic to infuse into milk for about 15 minutes. Strain milk and discard garlic. Season with sea salt. When milk has cooled sufficiently, whisk onto the egg and egg yolk in a stainless steel bowl. Place mixture into 8 ceramic containers, approximately 50ml in each. Cover tightly with cling film and place in the refrigerator until needed.

5 Remove legs from octopus and thoroughly rinse under cold water. Slice legs across into very fine discs; when discs are heated in the butter they will curl up. Peel red-core radishes and slice into fine discs about 1 mm thin. Cut cherry bell radishes in half and put aside. Sort through flowers and have them ready to serve.

6 Heat clarified butter, to a depth of at least 10cm, in a medium saucepan. The butter will need to be at 75˚C; use a thermometer for accuracy. Place a small stainless steel basket in the butter. Alternatively, use a small strainer so that you can quickly remove the squid and octopus once it is cooked.

7 Place garlic custard ramekins into a steamer and steam on high for approximately 8 minutes. While this is happening, reheat consomme and blanch radishes in boiling water for 1 minute. Line each serving bowl with a ring of red-core radish slices. Keep cherry bell radishes warm. Poach squid strips and sliced octopus tentacles in the clarified butter. Do this in at least 3 to 4 batches so squid cooks evenly. The squid and octopus will take approximately 1 minute to cook. The squid will turn opaque and the octopus will curl. Remove from butter and drain on a kitchen cloth. Repeat this process until all the squid and octopus is cooked.

8 When the custards are ready, remove from the steamer. Use a round soup spoon to remove the custards from the ramekins. Place custard in the middle of each bowl and top with squid and octopus. Arrange cherry bell radishes on top and garnish with flowers. Pour consomme into a small serving jug. Serve squid immediately and pour hot consomme onto squid at the table in front of your guests.

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