Crab, Broad Bean and Romanesque Salad

Perfect for the last days of summer, Tom Norrington Davies combines pale green romanesque broccoli with sweet white crab meat
By Tom Norrington-Davies
Crab, Broad Bean and Romanesque Salad
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4, as a starter
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Effort: easy

Ingredients

  • 1 kg broad beans, (unpodded weight)
  • 1 heads romanesque broccoli
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp cold pressed rape seed oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • 3 shallots or 1 small red onions, finely diced
  • 100 ml vermouth, or sweetish wine
  • 4 thin rashers dry cured smoked bacon, finely diced
  • 300 g white crab meat
  • 1 heads robust lettuce, eg. cos or 2 heads little gem, chopped
  • 1 tbsp roughly chopped chervil or flat leaf parsley
  • 1 lemon

Tips and Suggestions


You can make the salad with scallops instead of crab.
You can bulk the salad out with croutons or new potatoes to make it more of a main meal. It could also, without the lettuce, be the base for a very easy pasta dish. Orrechiette (ear-shaped) pasta would be best.

Method

1. Pod the broad beans and blanch them in unsalted water before shucking them from their inner membrane. You don't have to do this bit but it is worth while and the beans are a vibrant colour inside. Set them aside.

2. Pick the broccoli into bite-size florets and blanch them until only just tender. Set aside.

3. Heat the butter and oil in a frying pan. Fry the shallots with a little salt until just opaque and softening. Add the wine and simmer gently until the shallots are really melting and silky and the liquid has evaporated. This could take up to 15 minutes.

4. Add the bacon and fry it until just cooked through. Tip the bacon and shallot into a large mixing bowl and toss them with the crab meat, broad beans, broccoli, herbs and lettuce.

5. Dress with more rapeseed oil and a little lemon juice - just try half the lemon at first. Season to your liking and serve.

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