Prep. time: 30 minutes + 2 hours waiting time
Cooking time: About 2 hours
Alain Ducasse recipe at the Louis XV restaurant, Monaco
Preparing the seafood
- Remove the heads from 8 of the 12 prawns and shell all the tails, being careful not to remove the heads from the 4 whole prawns.
- Remove all the rings, leaving on the bottom part of the shell attached to the tail. Carefully arrange the prawns on a baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
- Prepare a court-bouillon for cooking the octopus: into a stainless steel pot, place the 2 lemons, halved and squeezed, the thyme, bay leaf, some peppercorns, the spirit vinegar, a handful of coarse grey sea salt and a cork. Bring to a boil.
- Add the cleaned octopus to the court-bouillon, move the pot to the edge of the burner and let cook for 20 to 30 minutes at a simmer. Check for doneness with a trussing needle.
- Remove the pot from the heat and let the octopus cool in the broth. Drain, cut the tentacles into 1.5 cm (1/2”) lengths and cover with oil from very ripe olives. Add the peeled halved degermed garlic cloves and the sprig of rosemary and set aside in a cool place.
- Rinse the small squid and drain on a clean dry towel.
- Cover the clams with cold salt water and leave for two hours in a cool place.
- Clean the white calamari meat, cut into large triangles and score the outer surface evenly with a sharp knife, being careful not to cut all the way through. Set aside in a cool place.
Cooking the beans
- Shell the fresh beans. Place them in a pot, cover them generously with cold water and bring to a boil. Skim the surface, add the sage leaves, rosemary sprig and white peppercorns tied in a piece of cheesecloth. Simmer for about one hour. Add some salt three-quarters of the way through the cooking time.
Cooking the seafood
- Drain the pieces of octopus.
- In a sauté pan, heat a drizzle of olive oil and sear the calamari, small squid and clams. Deglaze with the white wine, cover and cook.
- When the clams have opened up, drain the contents of the sauté pan through a strainer placed over a saucepan to catch all the liquid.
- Reduce this liquid by half and when it reaches the desired consistency, neither too liquid nor too thick, whisk in some oil from very ripe olives.
- Correct the seasoning, shell 8 clams, reserving the rest in their shells for garnish, and return all the seafood to the reduced cooking liquid.
Finishing and presentation
- Sear the prawns in a cast iron pan in a little olive oil. Season with a sprinkle of fleur de sel and drain on a stainless rack.
- Drain the beans and remove the aromatic garnish. Add the tomato confit and chopped basil leaves, then season everything with a drizzle of aged wine vinegar and some oil from very ripe olives.
- Add a few drops of lemon juice to the seafood, combine the seafood and bean mixtures together in one bowl and refrigerate.
- Mix everything gently, add some Espelette chili powder and correct the seasoning.
- When everything is cool, but not too cold, divide it attractively among serving plates. Add the “riquette” leaves, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with a little fleur de sel and give a generous grinding of fresh pepper. Serve immediately.
Recipe from the " Grand Livre de Cuisine d'Alain Ducasse "
Photo ©Copyright Didier Loire
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