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Prawn, Beets and Asparagus Salad with Saffron-Yogurt Hollandaise
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26 June 2012

Prawn, Beets and Asparagus Salad with Saffron-Yogurt Hollandaise & 1 “Insane” #FBC12 Winner!

Prawn, Beets and Asparagus Salad with Saffron-Yogurt Hollandaise

Well folks, the #FBC12 “insane” giveaway has seen an incredible (1640 entries) turn out of participants. Thanks to all who participated and I’m thrilled to see so many of you keen to attend #FBC12, especially as returnees. Now, the news you’ve all been waiting to hear (maybe) …. A very big congratulations to

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Sally Prosser, please get in touch via email and we will arrange for your ticket and sessions to be booked. Again, thanks to all who participated and I wish you could have all been winners but alas, there’s only so much money in the pot!

Prawn, Beets and Asparagus Salad with Saffron-Yogurt Hollandaise & 1 "Insane" #FBC12 Winner!
 
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When asparagus is in season, I am often drawn to wed it with prawns and sanctify the delectable union with hollandaise sauce. Inviting a few peppery green leaves, some tarragon and an avocado for good measure turns it into a really satiating affair. Here, the hollandaise is made using yogurt, which makes it less roly-poly than the usual butter-laden version. As someone who is very much infatuated with butter and its comforting, joy-inducing characteristics, I can boldly declare that the taste is not at all compromised. In fact, there is still a relative richness to the sauce that still maintains a vibrant freshness. Verjuice is the unfermented juice of semi-ripe grapes, which adds a delicate sweet-tangy tone and can be purchased from most Middle Eastern grocers as well as online here.
Author:
Serves: 4-8

Ingredients
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 350g/12oz beetroots, scrubbed clean and quartered
  • 450g/1lb asparagus, woody ends removed
  • 450g/1lb prawns, peeled and deveined
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped tarragon
  • 15g/1/2oz butter
  • 1 ripe avocado, halved, pitted and thinly sliced
  • 2 handfuls of rocket leaves
  • 1 pinch of saffron
  • 125ml/4 fl oz/1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 tsp verjuice, lemon juice or apple cider
  • ¼ tsp English mustard
  • 2 medium egg yolks
  • sea salt

Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/Gas 4. Line a roasting tin with foil, add 3 tablespoons of the olive oil and some salt and then toss the beetroots in the mixture. Crimp the edges of the foil to create a parcel. Bake in the oven for about 25 minutes or until tender and cooked through. Turn down the oven to 60ºC/140ºF/Gas 1 and keep the beets warm, adding the cooked asparagus and prawns too, until ready to serve.
  2. Meanwhile, boil a kettle of water, place the asparagus spears in a baking dish and then cover them with the boiling water. Leave them to sit for 5 minutes or until they are tender but still with a crisp bite. Drain the asparagus and drizzle the remaining olive oil over it. Season with salt, then cover and set aside in a warm place.
  3. Season the prawns with salt and pepper, sprinkle over the tarragon and toss well to cover. Place a heavy-based frying pan over a medium heat, melt the butter and then add the prawns, in two batches if necessary, and cook for 2 minutes on each side or until they turn pink and are just cooked through. Keep warm.
  4. Dilute the saffron in 2 tablespoons of hot water and leave to infuse for about 10 minutes.
  5. Make a double boiler by setting a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, so that the bowl just touches the water. Put the yogurt, verjuice, mustard, saffron water and egg yolks in the bowl, season with salt and pepper and then whisk constantly for 8–10 minutes until the mixture thickens.
  6. Remove the bowl from the heat and divide the beetroot, asparagus, prawns, avocado and rocket between 4 plates, then pour over the hollandaise or serve on the side.

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