A Study of Shellfish Recipe by Neven Maguire

A Study of Shellfish Recipe by Neven Maguire

A Study of Shellfish has the perfect balance of texture and flavour from the selection of shellfish. It’s a wonderful showcase for the fantastic produce that is harvested from the Irish ocean. It is a fun and challenging shellfish recipe, perfect for a creative chef.
Serves 6


Crispy Prawns in Kataifi Pastry
150g frozen kataifi pastry
25g plain flour
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 egg
50ml milk
12 fresh Dublin Bay prawns, peeled and veins removed
Groundnut oil, for deep-frying
Chilli jam, to serve
Curried mayonnaise, to serve

Crab Ravioli
100g organic salmon fillet, skinned, boned and cubed
1 egg yolk
1 tbsp cold cream
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp snipped fresh chives
1 tsp chopped fresh basil
100g white crab meat
12 wonton wrappers
Egg wash (made with 1 egg and 1 tbsp milk) to glaze
Creamed leeks to serve

6 Pacific oysters
1 rindless smoked streaky bacon rasher
Knob of butter
50g spinach leaves, washed and tough stalks removed
3 tbsp flaked sea salt
Lemongrass foam to serve (recipe below)


6 king scallops, roes removed (these can be saved for another dish) and patted dry with kitchen paper
1 tbsp rapeseed oil
Juice of ½ lemon
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Sauce vierge to serve (see below)

Sauce Vierge
2 tbsp confit oil from salmon or good olive oil
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
3 sprigs saffron, steeped in a little hot water
1 red pepper, roasted and finely chopped
1 tomato, finely chopped
Fresh coriander and chives, chopped

Lemongrass Foam
(makes about 300ml)
1 tsp butter, softened
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 lemongrass stalk, outer leaves removed and the core halved
1 lemon, finely grated rind and juice
50ml dry white wine
200ml coconut milk
100ml vegetable stock
Sea salt and freshly ground white pepper
1 tsp soya lecithin


Prawns in Kataifi Pastry
1. Thaw the pastry while still in its plastic for a minimum of 2 hours before using. Once thawed it will be soft and pliable and ready to use, but remember when using it that you must always keep it well covered.
2. Place the flour in a shallow dish and season generously. Beat the egg with the milk and a pinch of salt in a separate shallow dish.
3. Toss the prawns in the seasoned flour until lightly coated, then dip briefly in the egg wash, then wrap well in kataifi pastry.
4. To wrap the prawns, lay about 10g of the kataifi pastry in a rectangle on a board. Sit a prawn across the width at the end closest to you and then roll it up away from you to completely enclose it. Place on non-stick parchment paper, spaced well apart so that they don’t get tangled up and cover with cling film. Chill until ready to use (these will sit happily for up to 4 hours in the fridge).
5. To finish the prawns: Heat the oil in a deep-fat fryer or a deep-sided pan to 160°C. Cook in batches of three for about 3 minutes, turning halfway through, until crisp and golden brown and the prawns are cooked through. Drain on kitchen paper.

Crab Ravioli
1. Blend the salmon in a food processor. Add the egg yolk. Next add the cream, season to taste and blend to a smooth consistency.
2. Place in a bowl, stir in chives and basil, then fold in the crab.
3. Lay out the wonton wrappers on a work surface. Brush one wrapper with a little of the egg wash. Place a spoonful of the crab mixture in the centre and place another wonton wrapper on top. Shape and seal well.
4. Using a 6-cm scone cutter, cut to give a neat finish.
5. Blanch in a pan of boiling salted water for 2 minutes, remove with a slotted spoon and refresh in a bowl of iced water. Arrange on a tray and chill until needed.
6. To finish the crab ravioli: Place in a pan of boiling salted water for 2 minutes to just warm through, then drain briefly on kitchen paper.

1. Scrub the oyster shells. Place one, wrapped in a clean tea towel, on a firm surface with the flattest shell uppermost and the hinge pointing towards you.
2. Grip firmly, insert an oyster knife into the gap in the hinge and twist to snap the shells apart.
3. Slide the blade along the inside of the upper shell to sever the muscle that keeps the shells together.
4. Lift the lid off the top shell and run the knife under the oyster to remove it from the shell. Repeat until all the oysters are taken out of their shells. Reserve the bottom half of the shells for presentation.
5. Grill the bacon until crisp. Drain on kitchen paper.
6. Melt the butter in a pan over a medium heat, add the spinach and a pinch of salt.
7. Cook for a minute or so, stirring occasionally, until just wilted.
8. Drain off any excess liquid and then spoon a small mound into each reserved oyster shell.
9. Arrange on a warmed plate and keep warm. Add the raw oysters to the warm lemongrass foam and gently poach for 30 seconds.
10. Carefully remove the oysters with a slotted spoon and place on top of the spinach in the oyster shells.

1. Sear the scallops in rapeseed oil over a high heat for 1 minute on each side, until golden and crispy. Transfer to a plate, add a squeeze of lemon juice, then season to taste.

Sauce Vierge
1. Put all the ingredients in a saucepan and heat until warm.

Lemongrass Foam
1. Melt butter in pan, add shallot, lemongrass, lemon rind and cook for 2-3 minutes, until softened.
2. Add wine and reduce by half.
3. Stir in coconut milk and stock and bring to boil, simmer until thickened.
4. Discard lemongrass, season to taste and blend. Sieve into a pan, keep warm, add soya. Before serving use a hand blender to create a foam.

1. Add the chilli jam and mayonnaise onto warmed plates and arrange the prawns in Kataifi pastry on top.
2. Spoon the creamed leeks onto the plates and place the ravioli on top.
3. Place each oyster shell on flaked sea salt, crumble over the smoked streaky bacon, then spoon over the lemongrass foam.
4. Add the sauce vierge and place a seared scallop on top.

Chef’s Tip: Cook ahead
– The scallops can be opened and placed on damp kitchen roll in the fridge for up to 3–4 days.
– The prawns can be wrapped in the pastry and chilled for up to 3–4 days.
– The crab ravioli can be made 2–3 days in advance and covered with cling film in the fridge.
– All these elements can be frozen.

all-in-the-foodAll in the Food is a celebration of contemporary Irish cooking from Cathal Brugha Street, where most of our top chefs learned their craft. With recipes from star chefs, including Darina Allen, Neven Maguire, and Ross Lewis, along with contributions by some of Ireland’s rising stars, this book is a showcase of the most talented chefs in Ireland.

All in the Food is published by O’Brien’s Press and is available to buy here.​

MacNean House Neven Maguire

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