Tuesday, 6 September 2011
Our revels are now ended. The Divine Cherry is kiss-red, and the Celestial Dragon has roared contentedly at the glaring sun. The summer tree is heavy with perfumed blossoms of memory, and the soft aftertaste of sweet wine and lush nights continues still to tickle our tongues. In other words, holidays are over.
It is therefore time to resume what we suspended a couple of weeks ago. The recipe we are presenting here has a particular story to it, and it is worthwhile narrating it from the beginning.
In illo tempore, the world was still young. The moon hadn't yet learned to smile, and the sun didn't know how to murmur. The sky itself hadn't yet discovered sorrow - it was perpetually blue and impassive. Even the sea was still called Pontus, and time moved according to the stirrings of the flux. That day, the Celestial Dragon was resting his already-ancient bones in the Garden of the North-East. It was a particular garden, for not only was it guarded by the Five Fruit Dogs, but it had been entirely built by none other than the great Hercules himself. He had installed the Grey Gate, whose Sphinx-like entrance requirements had warded off many an intruder. He had even created a replica of the Milky Way which he had called the Gravel Way.
That day, the day the Celestial Dragon was resting on a long chair in the Garden of the North-East, basking in the still-shouting sun, Divine Cherry was about to be celebrated. Yes, even Divine Cherries have birthdays, and that day was not her birthday. After all, time had not yet even complete one cycle. Nonetheless, everyone had agreed that that day was to be the day that Divine Cherry's birthday should be celebrated. Divine Cherry was well-loved by everyone, and it was thus with a light heart that she had said "so be it" - and had immediately plunged herself in the preparation of succulent dishes to please her honoured and loving guests. She was helped in this by the Golden Peach, her trusted and respected mentor. Together they went prowling through the mansion that was their residence in search for food and ideas. They hunted relentlessly, ever vigilant, ever alert. Every nook and cranny of that fabulous residence could hide another recipe, and it was therefore with painstaking cautiousness that they sought for the Best. It was thus that, after an entire afternoon spent on hunting and discussing and drinking sparkling ambrosia, they eventually chanced, among other delicious treasures, upon the Sea Skewers. In those days, Sea Skewers were huge marine monsters, but Golden Peach and Divine Cherry managed to tame them and shrink them to a conventional, edible skewer size - to the joy and happiness and delight of everyone present. And this is how they did it:
First, they lightly fried the various kinds of seafood separately in a pan (those being king prawns, prawns, baby squids and scallops) with some olive oil and garlic. They decided that they were done once they were golden-hued - any longer in the pan would dry the fish unnecessarily and hence ruin everything. Fish must always be kept wept. Or at least slightly moist. Your call. Once then Golden Peach and Divine Cherry had conferred to the fish their golden complexion, they skewered them in the order shown in the picture (you may wonder how it is possible that we, now, have a picture of something that happened when Time was still in its cradle - well wonder not, for paradoxes run the world, and this is but one of many). Naturally, Golden Peach and Divine Cherry may just as well have chosen another order of impalement – excuse my French – but they didn't. You, however, may. Freely, even. Now, since we're tangentially talking about the picture, you may have noticed that in the upper half of the picture is a dragon-decorated bowl, and that this wondrous bowl contains a green sauce. That heavenly sauce Golden Peach and Divine Cherry used to complement the skewers, and it was made by mixing together a generous handful of rocket, some basil, half a clove of garlic, abundant olive oil (extra virgin; what else?), and a pinch of salt and pepper. Then they simply sprinkled it on the skewers and served the rest in a that dragon-decorated bowl for those who wished to have more. People are greedy, so when you do it, do make sure you prepare enough sauce.
When the Sea Skewers were finally served, it was unanimously acknowledged that the former marine monsters tasted much better after having passed through the sapient hands of both Golden Peach and Divine Cherry.
For 16 skewers:
-16 king prawns
-16 baby squids
-a handful of basil
-half a clove of garlic
-enough olive oil (extra virgin)
-salt & pepper
Lightly fry the seafood separately in a pan with oil and garlic until they turn light golden. Make sure not to overcook it, as to do so would dry it. Skewer the seafood. The order used here is: king prawn, baby squid, scallop and prawn. Feel free to change it to your own leisure. Prepare the sauce by mixing together all the ingredients in an electric mixer. If need be, add some oil and whisk it all with a fork. Cover the skewers lightly with the sauce and serve the remaining sauce on the side.
Ricetta in italiano
SPIEDINI DI MARE
Per 16 spiedini:
Salsina alla rucola:
-una grossa manciata di rucola
-un mazzetto di basilico
-mezzo spicchio d'aglio
-abbondante olio evo
-sale & pepe
Saltare in padella con olio e aglio i diversi tipi di pesce separatamente. Il pesce dev'essere solo dorato, non va cotto troppo altrimenti rischia di diventare secco. Preparare gli spiedini con il pesce cotto: io ho inserito prima una mazzancolla, poi un moscardino, il canestrello e per chiudere un gamberone. Nel frattempo mettere nel bicchiere del frullatore ad immersione la rucola, il basilico, lo spicchietto d'aglio e irrorare con abbondante olio evo, salare e frullare il tutto. Spennellare gli spiedini con un po' di salsina e servirli con la rimanente a parte.
And Spread the Mess