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Prawns with Crab Sauce and Pink Peppercorns

Recently I enjoyed a beautiful night out with my family at Samphire Restaurant at the Waterside Hotel in Donabate, County Dublin. Tom Walsh is the executive head chef and his restaurant has been getting great reviews over the last few months. I am not a food critic or restaurant reviewer, but I may occasionally include references to memorable meals. This was one of them with wonderful food and very friendly service.

Some of us had the salmon and crab fish cake for our starter. They were served with samphire and our table talk turned to wild sea shore vegetables. It reminded me of a very simple supper that I cooked last year, using fresh prawns and samphire from Skerries, and home grown asparagus and globe artichokes.

I was in Skerries that morning for the filming of one of the Surf’n'Turf cook-offs between Martin Shanahan of Fishy Fishy in Kinsale, and Paul Flynn of The Tannery in Dungarvan. Martin had called out to visit me the previous day, as he was searching for locally grown herbs and salads to use in his prawn cocktail. I had great fun with Martin and the crew, but by ‘take six’ of me opening my door and running down the steps to say hello, I think we both has fixed false grins on our faces.

‘Good frozen prawns are often better than fresh’. Not my words, but Martin’s. Paul Flynn had bought up all the fresh prawns in Skerries, meaning Martin had to use frozen ones. He sourced them from Rockabill Shellfish in Balbriggan, whose prawns are frozen at sea within three hours of catch. Martin won that particular round of the cook-off, although I would have found it difficult to choose between the two dishes. The moral of the story is that if frozen prawns are good enough for Martin Shanahan, they are good enough for me.

Prawns with Crab Sauce and Pink Peppercorns

Serves 4
12 or 16 frozen prawns, thawed
Lettuce or mixed salad leaves
250g fresh crab meat
2 tbsp mayonnaise
2 tbsp natural yoghurt
Dash of Tabasco
Squeeze of lime juice
Slightly crushed pink peppercorns

Arrange prawns and salad leaves on a plate. Combine mayonnaise and natural yoghurt, then add the Tabasco and lime juice. Gently mix in crab meat and serve on top of salad. Sprinkle the pink peppercorns on top.

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The Herb Garden is a Certified Organic Herb Nursery, established by Denise Dunne in 1995. We produce a wide range of Certified Organic Herb Seed and stock a large selection of Certified Organic Herb Plants that are not widely available. We also supply a range of certified organic salad, flower and native Irish wildflower seed.


 We specialise in Herb Garden Design for the private and corporate sector - restaurant and hotel kitchen gardens; heritage garden restorations; walled and medieval gardens; medicinal, aromatherapy and sensory gardens.


We also offer a Consultancy Service, giving advice on herb garden design, organic growing and organic conversion plans.

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Guest Monday, 25 September 2017

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