Coworth Park Hotel, Berkshire
1 x 2.5kg live brown crab
120g Exmoor caviar Crème fraiche
Herbs and flowers
500g plain flour
20g egg yolk
10g dill, chopped
100ml green apple juice 30ml white balsamic vinegar 2g celery salt
120g yuzu juice
Peel the cucumber. Blitz the peel with the dill, apple juice, vinegar, and salt until smooth, then pass. Scoop out balls of cucumber with a small melon baller. Place the cucumber balls and pickle into a sous vide bag and compress for 1 hour, then reserve.
Rub the flour, salt and butter for the tart shell together to a fine crumb. Add the egg yolk and 80ml of water and bring together, then cover and rest for at least 30 minutes. Roll out to 2mm and line 75mm diameter tart cases. Blind bake at 170°C for 12 minutes, then remove the baking beans and finish for a further 6 minutes. Reserve.
I like to cook shellfish in boiling water with enough salt to taste like the sea. Cook the crab for 3 minutes for every 500g of whole crab, then immerse in ice water to cool. Crack the claws and legs and pick out all the flesh, then reserve.
Bring the yuzu juice, sugar and 75ml of water to 85°C. Whisk in the ultratex and allow to cool to room temperature, stirring every 20 minutes. Pass and store in a squeeze bottle for service.
Fill the tart shells with crab meat and top with a smooth layer of 20g of caviar per tart. Arrange 6 balls of pickled cucumber on each tart with spots of yuzu purée. Garnish with a selection of seasonal herbs; I like to use borage flowers, bronze fennel, sea purslane, tiny tagets or cornflowers. Place a quenelle of crème fraîche beside the tart and serve.