AT A GLANCE
"Here in Paris, I use the native European écrevisse, which is very similar to our yabbies, only a little smaller," says chef Shaun Kelly. "I have very fond memories as a kid of using an old Milo tin to catch yabbies in the creek at the back of my parents' house, and every time I have écrevisse here, I'm reminded of that. The chilli oil makes more than you need, but it's a perfect fridge staple to add to almost anything. I use piment d'Espelette - it's got great colour and aroma; otherwise a more traditional version would be with Sichuan peppercorns."
Start this recipe a day ahead to make and infuse the chilli oil.
|01||For chilli oil, dry-roast chillies in a wok over medium-high heat, tossing frequently to prevent burning, until chillies darken (1-2 minutes). Tip into a bowl and, when cool enough to handle, pick off stalks. If you prefer less heat, remove seeds (crack chillies and toss in a colander to remove enough seeds to tone the heat down), then crush chillies with a mortar and pestle or blitz in a blender to a coarse powder, then transfer to a 300ml jar. Heat oil and ginger in a saucepan to 120C, then discard ginger, pour oil over chilli and stand overnight to infuse. Chilli oil will keep refrigerated for a month.|
|02||Split 3 yabbies in half lengthways and set aside. Blanch remaining yabbies in a large saucepan of boiling salted water for 1 minute, refresh in iced water, then drain and peel, reserving shells and heads for a stock.|
|03||Blend tomato, garlic, chilli and peppercorns in a small food processor until smooth.|
|04||Bring a large wok or saucepan of water to the boil, set up 6 Chinese steamer baskets on top, and place 6 shallow entrée-sized bowls that fit inside baskets on the bench.|
|05||Heat a saucepan over medium-high heat, add tomato mixture, bring to the boil, then gently swirl pan as you add egg. Stir for 20 seconds to warm the eggs, then divide among bowls. Quickly arrange yabby meat and a yabby half, cut-side up, in each bowl and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Place bowls in steamer baskets and steam over simmering water until custards are just set with a little wobble in the centre, and yabby is cooked through (6-7 minutes; keep an eye on the lowest basket as it will cook the quickest). Unwrap bowls, scatter with spring onion, drizzle with chilli oil, squeeze lime on top and serve.|