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Crab Salad with Apple Gelée
New York City
Chef Daniel Boulud
Adapted by StarChefs

Serves: 4

For the gelée:

4 Granny Smith apples (1/2 apple cut into tiny dice, the remainder cored and coarsely chopped)
Pinch vitamin C powder (available in health food stores)
2 ounces sheet gelatin
1 lime, segments only, cut into tiny dice

For the rémoulade:

Salt and freshly ground white pepper
1 stalk celery, peeled, trimmed and cut into matchstick-size pieces
1/2 small celery root, peeled, trimmed and cut into matchstick-size pieces
1 large egg yolk
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon sherry vinegar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons chopped cornichons
2 teaspoons chopped capers
2 teaspoons chopped parsley leaves, plus extra for finishing the dish
1/2 teaspoon chopped tarragon leaves, plus extra for finishing the dish
1/2 small clove garlic, peeled, split, germ removed, finely chopped
Apple juice, in case the rémoulade is too thick

For the crab and salad:

1 pound Peeky Toe or other best-quality fresh crab meat
Freshly squeezed lemon juice
Extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground white pepper
1 head frisée, white parts only, washed and dried
2 Tablespoons toasted walnuts, roughly chopped


For the gelée:

1) Put the apple chunks in the container of a food processor and whir, scraping down the sides of the container as needed, until the apples are finely pureed. Add the vitamin C powder to the puree (this will keep the apples from blackening) and blend to mix. Line a strainer with a double thickness of damp cheesecloth, set the strainer over a bowl and pour in the puree, allowing it to drip through the strainer. When it looks as though all the liquid has gone through the strainer, press against the solids to extract whatever liquid remains. Pour off 1 cup of the juice and save the leftovers to thin the rémoulade, if necessary (If it’s not necessary – drink the juice: Fresh apple juice is a treat.).

2) Drop the gelatin into a bowl of cold water to soften. Meanwhile, warm 1/4 cup of the apple juice in a small saucepan, then stir in the softened gelatin. When the gelatin is dissolved, mix it into the remaining 3/4 cup of strained juice and stir in the diced apple and lime. Chill until the gelatin sets and the gelée is syrupy. Keep the gelée covered in the refrigerator until needed.

For the rémoulade:

1) Bring a pot of salted water to the boil and place a bowl filled with ice cubes and water near the stove. Plunge the julienned celery stalk and root into the water and cook for about 1 minute, until tender. Scoop the celeries out of the pot and drop them into the ice-water bath to cool. When they’re cool, drain and pat them dry between layers of paper towels. Set aside.

2) Working in a mixing bowl, make the rémoulade’s mayonnaise base by whisking together the yolks, lemon juice, mustard and vinegar; season with salt and pepper. Whisking constantly, drizzle in the vegetable oil – start by adding the oil in droplets and then, when the mixture starts to look thick and creamy, pour the oil into the bowl in a slow, steady stream. Fold in the remaining ingredients, taste the rémoulade sauce, and add more salt and pepper, if needed. If you think the rémoulade is too thick, just stir in a splash of apple juice (The sauce can be made up to 1 day in advance and kept well covered in the refrigerator.).

For the crab and salad:

Toss the crab meat very gently (you don’t want to crush or shred it) with a little lemon juice and olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Do the same with the frisée.


For each serving, place a 2 3/4-inch ring mold in the center of a shallow soup plate. Divide the crab meat among the molds and top each with about a tablespoon of rémoulade. Arrange a few slivers of celery stalk and celery root over the rémoulade and then carefully remove the ring. Alternatively, you can just mound the ingredients, in layers, in the center of each soup plate. Either way, spoon some of the gelée with the small pieces of apple and lime around the little tower of crab. Finish with a bouquet of frisée, sprinkle with toasted nuts and serve immediately.

Aphrodisiacs Archives:
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