Well, yet another blast from the past here, and one which I adore. I find food trends and fads such funny things; and of course, the avocado is having its moment in the sun, and so it should. It’s one of our favourite things in the world, and South Africans have been eating avo on toast forever- I’m so happy the rest of the world has finally made the avocado (especially mashed on toast) its favourite go-to snack of choice. Avocado Ritz needs to make a comeback- it is quite the most sublime little dish, and of course, so easy to prepare. Ensure you have perfectly ripe avocados- we wrap ours in newspaper and pop them in the fruit bowl, which hastens the ripening of the fruit. Use Fuerte, or Hass- I prefer the latter, as even though they’re smaller, they are not as watery as the Fuerte varities, I find. You must use raw prawns- all the flavour comes from cooking them in the garlic butter and oil, and of course, you need to add these glorious pan juices to your pink sauce. I can’t resist a little serving of finely shredded Gem or Romaine lettuce, dressed in the pink sauce too; a little nod to the prawn cocktail, of course.
1 Hass avocado, sliced in half and stone discarded
For the Prawns:
150g raw prawns
Good knob salted butter
1 tsp olive oil
1 fat clove garlic, microplaned
Pinch Maldon salt
Good grinding black pepper
For the pink sauce:
2 tbsp mayonnaise
1 tbsp crème fraiche
1 tbsp double cream
1 tbsp tomato sauce
Splash soya sauce
1 tsp Dijon mustard
Slight squeeze of lemon juice
Good pinch paprika
1 small head Gem lettuce, shredded
Few dill leaves
Heat the garlic, butter and oil until frothing a little. Add the raw prawns, and fry in the garlic butter until pink all the way through- keep stirring them about, allowing them to become almost a little sticky and encrusted with the garlic. Once down, remove from the heat and set aside.
Slice off a little bit from the bottom of each avo half, to make it sit properly on the plate- it will tend to fall over otherwise!
Make the pink sauce by mixing everything together in a bowl. Add the prawns and all of the pan scrapings too. Mix well.
Spoon the prawns and some of the pink sauce into the avocado. Mix the remaining pink sauce with the shredded lettuce, and serve alongside the avo and prawns. Sprinkle with dill leaves and paprika, and serve immediately.