1 large abalone or 8 small farmed abalone
The green part of 4 spring onions thinly sliced (save the white parts for the master stock)
8 medium Shiitake mushrooms sliced
100g cooked vermicelli noodles
3 tablespoons chopped coriander
150ml oyster sauce
50ml soy sauce
50ml sesame oil
1 tbsp caster sugar
1 tbsp mirin
175ml shaoxing wine
175ml dark soy
600ml fish stock
100g yellow rock sugar
4 spring onions whites only
2 star anise
2 cloves garlic
15g ginger chopped
3 pieces mandarin peel, can use orange peel
2 cassia bark or half a stick of cinnamon
Begin by making the masterstock; add all ingredients for the stock into a pan and start to heat. Once the liquid starts to boil remove from the heat immediately and leave to cool and infuse.
Meanwhile prepare the abalone:
First you need to release the meat from the shell; lay the abalone upside down and with a small filleting knife cut between the shell and meat using a quick scraping motion. Reserve and clean the shells for later.
Now you need to remove the stomach and internal organs - these are the brown and green coloured flesh parts of the abalone - once these have been removed you should end up with just the white meat.
Next tenderise the meat so it is not tough after cooking. You can use a tenderising mallet to do this or even a rolling pin will be fine. Wrap the Abalone meat in a tea towel ensuring you have folded the towel over the meat 2 or 3 times to protect it, then with your mallet or rolling pin, strike the abalone firmly but not with enough force to smash it to pieces! It should be more of a heavy tap. Unfold the tea towel and check the meat, it should feel soft and tender. If it is still hard repeat the process until the meat has softened.
Once the masterstock has cooled down add the abalone and return to the heat until it begins to boil, remove immediately and place in the fridge to cool.
Now make the dressing by adding all the ingredients together and mixing well.
Once the abalone has cooled enough to handle remove from the masterstock (you can use the masterstock again but only once more), using a sharp knife slice the abalone into very thin slices.
Once you have finished slicing place into a bowl and add the coriander, mushrooms and the remainder of the spring onions and dress slightly with a little of the dressing. In a separate bowl also dress the noodles lightly with the dressing.
Place the noodles in the bottom of the cleaned abalone shells from earlier. Carefully place the abalone mix on top of the noodles and steam for 2 to 3 minutes in a pan with boiling water or a steamer for 2 minutes.
NOTES FROM JULIAN LLOYD
A trip to Sydney fish markets inspired me to come up with this dish. I made my usual stop at Christie’s seafood for breakfast and had some whole farmed Abalone served in the shell with spring onions and a soy sauce based stock. I couldn’t quite put my finger on what was in the stock and the vender seemed quite reluctant to tell me, and I don’t blame him!
As soon as I returned to Mollymook I got to work in the kitchen and created this. Special credit goes to my Sous Chef Alex Dawkins for the idea of using a master stock.
We serve it in the shell at the restaurant, but it can be served straight on to a plate.
Recipe provided by Rick Stein at Bannisters Mollymook