This Recipe Makes 8 Thermidors
Crayfish Thermidor is a classic French preparation that was very popular in upscale restaurants during the early to mid-1920’s.
In the dish, the crayfish meat is combined into a rich heavy cream based sauce. The crayfish & sauce mixture is spooned back into the shells, topped with more cheese, & baked until golden brown.
Crayfish Thermidor Ingredients:
- 4 medium-large Crayfish
- Large bowl of ice water
- Water for steaming the Crayfish
For the sauce:
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 2 cups cheese (I used gouda)
- 250ml double thick cream
- ½ teaspoon cayenne or chilli powder
- ½ tablespoon garlic powder
- 2 egg yolks
For the topping:
- Red chilli flakes
- Dried or fresh parsley
- 1 cup Mozzarella cheese
- Fresh thyme (optional)
- Rinse the Crayfish & set onto a chopping board.
- Fill a large pot with water & place the Crayfish in the water.
- Allow the crayfish to steam on medium-high heat on the stove-top for 15 minutes. Notice the colour change on the Crayfish turn into a bright orange.
- Once the Crayfish is done steaming, remove from the pot & submerge them into a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process. Keep the Crayfish in the cold water for about 2 minutes.
- Place the cold Crayfish onto a board, working with one at a time.
- Carefully remove the legs & the claws off.
- Cut the Crayfish down the middle using a sharp knife, splitting it in half.
- Remove the intestinal thread (black tube down the tail part of the Crayfish). Also remove all of the muck in the head. Discard of this as it cannot be digested.
- Next, remove the tail meat & set aside.
- Do the same for all the Crayfish. Be sure to keep the shells as this will be used later on in the recipe.
- Place the Crayfish meat onto a chopping board.
- Chop up the meat.
- Set aside.
- Next up, it’s time to prepare the sauce. Have all of your ingredients ready.
- First up is the butter.
- Next, the flour.
- Garlic powder & the double thick cream.
- Cayenne or chilli powder.
- Grate the cheese of your choice, I used Gouda.
- Have your egg yolks ready in a bowl.
- Heat a pot on the stove-top & add in the butter.
- Allow the butter to melt.
- Thereafter, add in the flour.
- Mix well.
- Drop in the double thick cream.
- Mix well.
- Add in the cayenne or chilli powder & the garlic powder.
- Mix well & add in the egg yolks.
- Mix & turn off the heat.
- Add in the grated cheese.
- Mix & add in the Crayfish meat. The sauce is very buttery so if you prefer a thicker sauce, add 2 tablespoons of butter instead of 4.
- Combine & set aside.
- Next, preheat the oven to 180° Celsius.
- Grate the mozzarella cheese & set aside.
- Line a baking tray with foil & place the shells of the Crayfish onto it.
- Spoon the Crayfish & sauce mixture into the shells.
- Top with breadcrumbs & the mozzarella cheese.
- Sprinkle over some red chilli flakes & dried or fresh parsley.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 10-15 minutes at 180° Celsius.until golden.
- Carefully remove from the baking tray.
- Plate & garnish with fresh thyme (optional).
- Serve this Crayfish Thermidor with buttery garlic bread & lemon wedges.
- Best served immediately.