Monday, June 20, 2011

Basque Peppers stuffed with Crab

Basque Peppers Stuffed with Crab

Pimentos del piquillo de Lodosa rellenos de txangurro
A recent dinner party based on the Basque Region of France and Spain and the Sierras of California and Nevada netted some amazing food. This was one of
the dishes I prepared.

The Piquillo Chile is one raised in the region. It is not spicy, though it is really flavorful. It can be used red or green. In this dish I used some fresh green ones that I had grown and some canned red ones from France. If you cannot find them Anaheim Chiles would be a suitable substitute. Pimento peppers are a little more difficult to source fresh, but they could also be used.

To prepare raw chiles remove the core and stem carefully, then grill or broil till charred on all sides. Place in a plastic bag for 5-10 minutes to steam and then carefully remove the skin. This recipe is for about 8 peppers. You can also use canned peppers in a pinch.
Crab Stuffing:

You will need to cook a live crab in a pot of water with 2 fresh leeks, 1 carrot and ½ of an onion. Add cayenne pepper and get water to a boil, and then add the crabs, boiling for 15-20 minutes. Allow to cool and pick the crab meat out. This recipe needs about 1 ½ cups of crab meat.

Olive oil & Butter (just enough to sauté)
1 small red onion finely chopped
1 carrot finely chopped
4 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
3 cloves of garlic finely minced
1 jigger of Cognac (not brandy)
1cup sherry
Spices to taste (I used about 1 tablespoon of herbs de Provence and fresh black pepper)
½ cup fish stock
6 Tablespoons of cream
2 tablespoons bread crumbs
Sauté the onions & carrot till the onions are translucent.

Clear a hot spot in the center and add the tomato paste and stir then stir it into the aromatics, do the same with the garlic.

Add the sherry and cognac and deglaze the pan, then add the cream, bread crumbs spices and stock. Add crab and allow the mixture to cool.
Fill the prepared peppers with the stuffing, being careful not to tear the delicate peppers.  If you have some left over you can also put it on toast points and broil.

The sauce:

Take one of the prepared peppers and chop finely.

In a sauce pan add the pepper and ¼ cup of cream and ½ ounce of sherry.

Warm, through for about 5 minutes, stirring.

Pour into a blender and puree.
Pour the sauce on the peppers and bake at 350 for about 15 minutes. 
Serve warm or at room temperature. 

1 comment:

Connie Lou said...

Devany, these look wonderful! I am in the process of creating a holiday menu-early-because my youngest son will be on leave for a month (army), he will LOVE these! Thank you! Connie