Our favorite dish during our recent dinner at Inter Scaldes was the caviar with corn and oxtail. I liked the combination of corn and caviar so much, that I made something inspired by the dish at Inter Scaldes (certainly not intended to be a copy) for our Christmas dinner. It was a ‘cannolo’ of cornflour (very similar to tortilla chips) filled with a corn and oxtail mousse, and topped with real caviar. The combination of the sweetness of the corn with the depth of flavor added by the oxtail, the salty earthy caviar and the crispy corn shell turned out very nice. Although the caviar makes it special, this is in essence a simple dish with only a few ingredients. The only problem with this dish is that for the flavors to be in balance, you would really like there to be as much caviar as corn. The price of caviar makes that a costly endeavor.
As an alternative you could also serve this as an amuse bouche in a Martini glass with the same amount of caviar, but only a small piece of ‘tortilla chip’ and less of the corn puree. Here’s what I did…
4 ears of corn
1 kg (2.2 lbs) of oxtail
60 ml (1/4 cup) heavy cream
100 grams (3.5 oz) caviar
about 1/4 cup (40 grams) cornflour
oil for deep frying
Meanwhile, prepare the corn cannoli. At first I thought I could simply make corn tortillas using masa (instant corn tortilla flour), but in the photo you can see what happens: the cannoli will break because the dough doesn’t have enough elasticity. So instead of water I used an egg, and then it worked.
The dough should be rolled out thinly in order for the cannoli to become crispy. Therefore, I used a pasta machine. On my pasta machine with “1” the widest setting and “9” the narrowest, I rolled it out to setting “6”.
…and deep fry them in hot oil (180ºC/350ºF) until they are golden. Repeat until you have used up all the dough. You may have dough for more than 6 pieces, but it is good to make a few spare ones in case they break.
This works well with a good champagne or prosecco, preferably not too dry. If you can find it, “To” by Velich, and Austrian wine served with the dish that was the inspiration for this at Inter Scaldes, would be even better.
This spaghetti with red wine and leeks (‘drunken’ spaghetti) is quite different from the caviar extravaganza above, and more of a weekday dish. That doesn’t mean it isn’t very tasty though!