Dungeness Crab with Vanilla Aioli and Gypsy Pepper Confit
Paired with ZD Chardonnay, California
Chef Joseph Humphrey
Gypsy Pepper Confit:
4 Gypsy Peppers, or small red bell peppers
4 tbl. olive oil
4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
1 tsp. coriander seed, crushed
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
3 egg yolks
10oz. grape seed or canola oil
1 vanilla bean
1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
salt to taste
2 lbs fresh Dungeness Crab meat
2 tbl. minced fresh chives
12 leaves fresh arugula
1 tbl. extra virgin olive oil
Preparation for Gypsy Pepper Confit:
Place the peppers and 2 tbls. of the olive oil in a mixing bowl and toss to coat the peppers. Season with salt and pepper. Cook the peppers over a hot grill until the skin blisters and begins to char. Transfer the peppers to a mixing bowl, cover with plastic and allow the peppers to cool to room temperature. Carefully clean away the charred skin and remove the seeds from the inside of the pepper. Once the peppers are cleaned, lay them flat on a nonstick baking pan. Sprinkle with the crushed garlic, coriander seeds, remaining olive oil, and salt and pepper. Place in an oven set at the lowest setting (175 degrees) for 30 minutes, or until the edges of the peppers begin to dry. Remove from the oven and let sit at room temperature.
Preparation for Vanilla Aioli:
With a small knife cut the vanilla bean in half lengthwise. Scrape out the seeds and reserve for later. Place the vanilla bean shell in a small saucepot along with the grape seed oil. Place the pot over low heat and gently warm the oil until fragrant, about 10 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and let cool to room temperature. Once cool, remove the vanilla bean shell and discard. Put the egg yolks and the garlic in the cup of a blender running; slowly add the vanilla infused oil to the egg yolks until all of the oil is incorporated. Transfer the aioli to a small mixing bowl and whisk in the reserved vanilla bean seeds and lemon juice. Season to taste with salt.
Place the crab meat in a mixing bowl, along with the chives and the vanilla aioli. Gently mix. Place 1 piece ofGypsy Pepper Confit in the center of a chilled salad plate. Carefully place a mound of crab salad in the center of the pepper, and garnish with a few whole leaves of arugula and a drizzle of olive oil.