view from the brick terrace at the back of the house
There will be a brand new episode of Inspired Cooking airing on Cape Ann TV tonight at 8:30. Last week I had the good fortune to tour the summer home of Henry Davis Sleeper, Beauport, on Eastern Point in Gloucester. Not only did I get a wonderful tour from the delightful and every knowledgeable site manager Pillar Garro but we recreated one of the recipe Mr. Sleeper is said to have served his guests.
It is a simple cold salad, easy to prepare and would likely have been served for lunch.
I am going to give you the recipe at is originally appeared in Elise De Wolfe’s book “Recipes for Successful Dining” that was published in 1934. Both Pilar and I were stumped as to how crayfish might have made it on to a menu in Gloucester back in those days so if anyone has any clue on that, please respond with a comment below.
Cook crayfish in boiling salted water for 5 minutes. Cook small lobsters in a court bouillon for 12 to 15 minutes or a large one for 25 minutes. When cold cut the lobster meat into pieces and mix with the meat of the crayfish and a mayonnaise dressing to which have been added a teaspoonful of chili sauce and a dash of paprika. Serve in crystal cups garnishing with a circle of lettuce leaves. Decorate the top with the red portions of the crayfish. Serve very cold.
I stuck pretty much to the recipe, using equal parts of lobster to crayfish and I made the dressing separately and folded it in to the seafood, using just a small amount of the chili sauce as not to obscure the taste of the seafood.
I am sure that Mr. Sleepers cook and housekeeper Mary Wonson would have made her own mayonnaise and chili sauce but I took the prepared route on this one. I seasoned the dish with salt and pepper and place it in iced shrimp cocktail glasses on a bed of gorgeous native lettuce that I bought here in Essex–gorgeous!