This recipe is courtesy of Gabriel Waterhouse, chef-owner of The Water House Project in London. From its small-scale beginnings as a dinner pop-up, Gabriel has grown his restaurant into an impressive dining experience that spotlights the hyper-seasonality of local British ingredients. For more insight into Gabriel’s work, take a look at this cocktail pairing his restaurant did with No. 3 London Dry Gin earlier this year.
For the Lobster & Lobster Oil
- 1 x 500g lobster (live)
- 150ml olive oil
- Begin by placing the lobster in the freezer for 20 minutes, this will render it unconscious. After 20 minutes, remove it from the freezer and place the point of a sharp chef’s knife through the back of its head.
- Bring a pan of water to a rolling boil. Twist the body from the tail and blanch the body and claws for 10 minutes and the tail for 5 minutes. Remove the lobster with a slotted spoon and chill in iced water.
- Once cool, pat dry and peel away the shell from the tail, reserving the shells. Use a knife to carefully remove the shell around the claws by breaking it open. Dice the tail and claw flesh into 1cm cubes and keep in the fridge.
- Separate the shells and claws and roast in the oven for 30 minutes at 180°C, discard the bodies. Remove from the oven, and using the end of a rolling pin, smash the shells into smaller pieces in a pan.
- Cover the shells with the olive oil, heat gently to warm the oil to boiling point, then remove from the heat and leave to infuse for 1 hour. Once cool, pass off the shells and reserve the oil. The oil you don’t use can be kept in the fridge for several months.
For the Kaffir Lime Gel
Note: this is tricky to make in small quantities and may be easier to double to get a smooth texture.
- 162g water
- 62g sugar
- 3g agar agar
- zest of 1 kaffir lime
- Measure the sugar and water into a pan and bring to a boil. Add the agar agar and simmer for 1 minute, then pour into a container to chill.
- Once cool, place into a blender along with the zest of the kaffir lime and blend to a smooth purée. Add a dash of water to loosen if necessary. Keep in the fridge until needed.
For the Pickled Peach
- 1 x firm but ripe peach
- 50ml white wine vinegar
- 50g sugar
- 50ml water
- Dice the peach into a fine brunoise, a couple of millimetres in size.
- Bring the sugar, white wine vinegar and water to a simmer, then leave to cool and chill in the fridge.
- In a bowl, mix the peach and vinegar syrup together to pickle the peach gently and leave in the fridge for later.
For the Tomato Consommé
- 1kg tomatoes
- 1 shallot (finely sliced)
- 2 cloves garlic (crushed)
- 4 sprigs of thyme
- 1 bunch of basil
- 1/2 bunch tarragon
- 8g salt
- 10g sugar
- 4 drops of Tabasco
- 2 tbsp of Worcester sauce
- 2 tbsp of white balsamic
- Roughly chop the tomatoes, slice the shallots, break the garlic and chop the herbs. Place into a large mixing bowl along with the sugar, salt, tabasco, Worcester sauce and white balsamic. Break down a little with the end of a rolling pin and leave to macerate for 2 hours.
- Line a colander or large sieve with a fine tea towel or muslin cloth. Pour the tomato mixture out onto this and collect the tomato essence below. You can wrap the tea towel to cover the tomatoes at the top and place a gentle weight onto this to help extract the juice. The liquid that you collect below should be a clear transparent yellow. If there are traces of red pigment from the skins, you can pass the consommé again. Check the seasoning with salt and add white balsamic for acidity if necessary. Chill in the fridge until needed.
For the Tarragon Oil
Note: this will make more than you’ll need for the recipe, but this can be kept in the fridge and used again.
- 1 bunch tarragon
- 150ml vegetable oil
- Place the tarragon and oil into a jug blender. Make sure the blender is not sealed so steam can escape. Blend the tarragon and oil together at full speed until steaming hot, around 70°C, this will take around 5 minutes.
- Once hot pass, the liquid through a muslin cloth/tea town to collect the bright green oil below. Discard the pulp of the tarragon.
- 1 bunch spring onions (finely sliced)
- nasturtium leaves
- fennel herb / bronzed fennel
- Finely slice the tops of the spring onion and mix with the diced lobster. Blanch the stem of the onions and chill in ice water, cut and mix through the lobster also. Drain off the pickle from the peach and mix this through too.
- Divide the lobster between two bowls and place a few drops of kaffir lime gel on top. Garnish with the herbs. Spoon the tarragon and lobster oils around the bowl and finish by pouring the consommé over the dish at the table.