Royale of Sea Urchin with Cream of Lobster
The inimitable Jeffrey Steingarten's It Must've Been Something I Ate is chock-full of wit and wisdom, with the occasional recipe which has passed muster the formidable Vogue food critic's stringent criteria. In the essay entitled Prickly Pleasures, you'll find everything you ever wanted to know about sea urchins. His accompanying recipe comes from no less hallowed a source than Alain Ducasse and Didier Elena. And who can resist cooking from a recipe he hails as "my nomination for best dish of the new millennium"?
Instead of the original Veloute of Lobster, I've used a creamy lobster sauce that involves less last-minute work (the veloute requires whipping just before serving). I've also turned out the sea urchin custards instead of serving them separately in espresso cups. As a garnish, I've used glistening pearls of ikura (salmon roe) - their briny bite is wonderful against the luxuriant creaminess of the sauce.