1large Desiree potato (about 450gm), quartered150 gm picked, cooked spanner crab meat1kaffir lime leaf, thinly sliced¼ cupcoriander leaves, finely chopped1long red chilli, thinly sliced2 tsp finely grated gingerFor deep-frying: vegetable oil1 tbsp rice vinegar1½ tbsp olive oil2 tsplemon juice100 gm baby spinach leavesLemon and ginger egg mayonnaise1egg15 ml cider or white wine vinegarFinely grated rind and juice of ½ lemon1 tsp ginger juice (see note)¾ tsp Dijon mustard200 ml vegetable oilChoux pastry50 gm butter, diced75 gm flour2 eggs
Cook potato in a saucepan of simmering salted water over medium-high heat until tender (20-25 minutes), drain well, transfer to a steamer placed over a saucepan of simmering water to steam dry (2 minutes), then pass through a coarse sieve or a potato ricer into the hot, dry pan.
Meanwhile, for lemon and ginger egg mayonnaise, cook egg in a small saucepan of boiling water over medium-high heat until hard-boiled (4 minutes), refresh in iced water and peel. Blend in a food processor with cider, lemon rind and juice, ginger juice and mustard (30 seconds), season to taste, then, with motor running, add oil in a thin steady stream until thick and emulsified. Season to taste and set aside.
For choux pastry, combine butter and 125ml water in a saucepan, season to taste, bring to the boil over medium heat and stir constantly until mixture emulsifies. Add flour and stir well to combine, then reduce heat to low and stir until mixture comes away from the sides of pan (1 minute). Transfer to the heated bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, then, with motor running on low speed, add eggs one at a time and mix until a smooth, thick, glossy pastry forms (2-3 minutes; it’s important that the dough is hot when you incorporate the eggs).
While choux pastry is still warm, mix equal amounts of choux pastry and puréed potato then form into a disc (discard any remaining potato). Cover with plastic wrap and set aside to cool slightly and thicken (10-15 minutes). Transfer to a bowl, fold in crab meat, kaffir lime, coriander, chilli and ginger and season to taste. Heat vegetable oil in a deep saucepan or deep-fryer to 180C. Roll crab mixture into 25 balls and deep-fry in batches, turning occasionally, until golden and cooked through (3-4 minutes; be careful as hot oil will spit). Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on absorbent paper.
Meanwhile, combine vinegar, olive oil and lemon juice in a bowl, add spinach, toss to combine and transfer to a plate. Serve with beignets, with lemon and ginger egg mayonnaise for dipping.
Note To make 1 tsp ginger juice, squeeze the liquid from 2 tsp grated ginger.
This recipe is from the July 2012 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.