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Friday 13 July 2012

Experiment - Recipe: Hearts of Palm, Crab and Tomato Salad (low carb high protein)

by Simon Fernandez of ferdiesfoodlab

I always like to try out new ingredients, and I'm nearly always trying to make something that tastes good but keeps this pounds off the waistline, so when Cook's and Company sent me some Hearts of Palm in the mail I thought I'd give them a try. They have a similar taste and texture to artichokes, and reminded me a little of white asparagus.

After a little hunting around the kitchen for some ingredients I decided on a salad type ensemble: Tomato, shredded Egg White Omelette, Crab & Palm Hearts dressed w/ Egg Yolk coated Rosemary Croutons, Basil, Coriander & Lemon Zest with a touch of White Balsamic Reduction

I don't think I'd change this at all, it was absolutely gorgeous! The flavours work really well, if you don't go mad with the sauce it's extremely healthy.

ingredients (serves 4)
for the heart of palm & crab salad
3 beef tomatoes (coarsely diced)
400g white crab meat (cooked, torn into chunks)
2 egg whites (fried / shredded)
220g (1 tin) hearts of palm (sliced into 4mm think slices / rings)
2 tbsp mayonnaise or heart of palm sauce to taste (see variations)

for the egg yolk coated rosemary croutons
100g rosemary infused brown seeded batch or focaccia (roasted)
2 egg yolks (50C & whipped)

for the garnish
coriander leaves
basil shoots
lemon zest
poppy seeds (optional)
a though of white balsamic reduction

blender if you're making the sauce (instead of using mayo)

heart of palm & crab salad
Prep the ingredients as indicated in the list.
Whisk the eggs season them and make a thin omelette from them. Once cooled slice into thin stops.
Remove the centres of the hearts of palm and cut the remianing tubes into rings reserving the soft centres for the sauce. If you're using mayo instead simple slice the centres and add them to the rings.
Mix the tomatoes and the mayo, then add the crab and the egg and lay on the plates ready to dress.

egg yolk coated rosemary croutons
Lightly whisk the egg yolks over a bain marie just to make the mix homogenous and warm it up to 50C.
Cut the bread into crouton sized pieces and roast in the oven at 180C for 8mins or until golden, them remove and add them to the yolks,  mixing well with a fork until all the yolk coats the bread and season with a little salt.

to serve
Dress the salad with the croutons and palm hearts, add sauce at this point if you've made it, and garnish with the lemon zest, coriander, basil and poppy seeds. Serve immediately.

thinking ahead
The sauce will keep for a few days, just be sure to keep the palm heart rings in their liquor in the fridge.

techniques used

If you fancy a really complimentary dressing don't use the mayonnaise, make a sauce from the liquor the palm hearts come in. Use the the same method as for mayonnaise here but:

use these ingredients:
1 egg yolk
100ml liquor
palm heart soft centres put aside (add with liquor)
10ml lemon juice
salt to taste
around 200ml sunflower or rapeseed oil

It should come out about half the viscosity of mayonnaise, and complements the crab and this salad very well!!

with thanks to Cooks & Co for the product - Hearts of Palm see here for more info!

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