Monday 7 November 2011

Cockle Popcorn

cockle popcorn
Cockle Popcorn
Shellfish fanatic here. Always have been and thanks to it being natural produce with no interference, still can be! Absolute gluten free goodness.

I love watching cooking shows, no more so than when shellfish is involved, so I was excited at the prospect of some cockle and mussel recipes being featured on the Great British Food Revival. As soon as I heard the mention of Cockle Popcorn I knew I had to try this.

Cockles are a staple for me, I eat them most weeks on a Thursday or Friday when they are bought in fresh from Billingsgate Fish Market by my local fishmonger. Shellfish isn't for everyone, but I've grown up eating all sorts of it and for me there is no food group lovelier than that.

The reason this recipe is called Cockle Popcorn is because the cockles actually pop when they hit the heat. This is an acquired taste, but if you love the salty taste of the sea that you get from cockles, this is a must try.

A warning before I write the recipe: If you don't have a deep fat fryer, you will need a splatter cover for the pan or else the oil will spit. Seriously, don't make this in a pan unless you have something that will protect you and your kitchen from the hot oil. I'm writing from personal experience!

Fresh Cockles (already cooked and out of the shell)
Corn Flour
Vegetable Oil
  •  Dry the cockles with paper towel
  • Put the cockles into the corn flour and cover them fully
  • Put the floured cockles into a colander and shake of the excess flour
  • Heat vegetable oil on high
  • When the oil is hot enough for deep frying CAREFULLY add the cockles using a slotted spoon
  • Cover immediately with a splatter cover
  • The cockles will start to pop
  • Remove once lightly golden around 1 1/2 - 2 mins
  • Put the popcorn cockles onto paper towel to drain off any excess oil.
  • Serve
I didn't season the flour because the cockles are naturally salty enough, plus, I like my shellfish flavours to be natural, nothing added. You aren't adding any flavours here, it's all about the texture. You have a lovely crispy outside and a juicy, soft center full of the taste of the sea inside. I'm hooked.

A mad gluten free experiment maybe, but it isn't the first and it definitely won't be the last!

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