Crab and Gruyère Tartlets
Cheese with fish? Something of a taboo, and certainly not something I rush toward. However, if there is a rule that prohibits combining fish with cheese then amongst the exceptions that perhaps prove the rule are some classics. Lobster Thermidor, for example. And Gruyère-topped croutons accompanying a Soupe de Poisson. But then, of course, there is now the uber-trendy lobster mac-and-cheese: haven't rushed toward that one!
When Rick Stein proposes a dish it's almost always worth paying attention to it. And I can think of two instances where he has combined cheese with crab. This is one of them. Basically all I have done is adjusted the quantities to make use of one tub of 50:50 brown and white crab meat to make 2 tartlets. I have tried this recipe with only white crab meat and the result is on the dry side. An individual tartlet is sufficiently filling for a light lunch or supper, accompanied by a salad. A link to the original recipe is below.
Crab and Gruyère Tartlets (makes 2)
Shortcrust pastry, approx. 240g (which equates to approx. 150g flour if making yourself)
1 egg, white and yolk separated
150g tub of 50:50 brown and white crab meat
40ml double cream
Cayenne pepper, a pinch
Nutmeg, freshly-ground, a pinch
25g Gruyère cheese, finely grated
Roll out the pastry to the thickness of a £1 coin and use to line two 12cm tartlet tins which have been lightly greased with butter. Prick the bases in several places, then leave to chill in the fridge for 20 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 220°C and put a baking sheet in the oven to heat up.
Cover the tartlet bases with greased baking paper or foil and fill with baking beans. Place on the baking sheet and bake blind for 15 minutes, then remove the beans and the paper or foil, brush the bases of the tartlets with the egg white, and bake for a further two minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 200°C.
In a bowl, combine the crab meat, the egg yolk, the cream, the nutmeg, cayenne and some salt and pepper. Pour the mixture into the tartlet bases and sprinkle over the Gruyère cheese.
Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden. Serve warm.
Rick Stein's favourite seafood recipes - The Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2015/apr/19/rick-stein-favourite-seafood-recipes