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Crab, asparagus & Jersey royal salad

Rosie Birkett

Three of the defining ingredients of spring and early summer brought together in a salad

Recipe Meta

Prep

35 mins

Cook

45 mins

Serves

4

Difficulty

Medium

Ingredients

  • 300g Jersey royal potatoes, scrubbed
  • 1 sprig of mint
  • 300g crab meat, split into white and brown
  • 1 green apple, cored and finely chopped
  • 3 spring onions, finely sliced
  • 200g asparagus, woody stalks removed and saved
  • 1 baby gem, leaves picked and washed and dried, heart split in two
  • 10g chervil leaves, washed and picked
  • 10g tarragon leaves, washed and picked
  • 10g parsley leaves, washed and picked
  • 20g seaweed or sea purslane
  • Juice of 1 lemon

For the mayonnaise

  • 2 egg yolks
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 200ml vegetable oil
  • 100ml extra virgin rapeseed oil
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • Pinch of white pepper

Method

First cook the potatoes. Bring a large pan of salted water to boil, add the mint and the Jersey royals and simmer for 15 mins, until tender – do not be afraid of overcooking them, as they are far better soft than chalky.

While the potatoes cook, make the mayonnaise. In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks, salt and lemon juice and then, still whisking, gradually add the vegetable oil in a steady stream. Continue to whisk until a mayonnaise consistency emerges. If it splits, don’t panic – just add a squeeze more lemon and keep whisking vigorously until it comes together. Add the rapeseed oil, whisking, to finish the mayo, then add the pepper. Check for seasoning, adding more salt or lemon as required.

In another bowl, mix half of the mayo with the brown crab meat, a squeeze more lemon and cayenne pepper. Fold the apple and spring onion through this. Taste for seasoning.

Boil the asparagus stalks hard in a pan of water for 10 mins to make a quick stock, then chop the spears into three on the diagonal and boil in the stock for 3-5 mins, until just tender. For the last minute, drop in the seaweed to blanch. Drain immediately and refresh in cold water.

Spread the brown crab meat and apple mayo out on a platter. Top with the potatoes, lettuce, seaweed and asparagus, building up layers and seasoning as you go with salt, pepper and lemon. Top with the remaining mayo, followed by the white crab meat and soft herbs. Squeeze over a touch more lemon and dust with cayenne pepper.

Image: Helen Cathcart

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