Fine dining needn’t be overcomplicated. Peter Gunn, the chef and owner of Melbourne’s Ides restaurant, uses high-quality and fresh ingredients to create spectacular dishes. This seafood dish could work as an impressive lunch or a light dinner.
Steamed marron and pickled zucchini salad
4 live marron (250g-300g each)
2 yellow zucchini
10g sea salt
250g white wine vinegar
100g caster sugar
1 tsp yellow mustard powder
1 tsp yellow mustard seeds
50g American mustard
10g Nigella seeds
24 chive flowers
24 garlic flowers
Spike marrons through the head and steam whole for 8 minutes. Remove tail from shell and halve lengthways. Season with sea salt and lemon juice
Bring vinegar, sugar, mustard seeds and mustard powder to the boil and remove from heat, leave to cool to room temperature
Halve zucchinis lengthways and slice into 1cm-thick semicircles
Toss zucchini in sea salt and allow to sit for 10 minutes before rinsing off and patting dry.
Add zucchini to vinegar and mustard seed pickling mixture (it’s best left for 24hrs before use).
Dice the pumpkin into one-inch cubes and steam until tender – for about 20 minutes. Combine the steamed pumpkin with the butter and American mustard and blend. Season with salt to taste.
Lightly toast nigella seeds in a dry pan.
To serve, spoon some puree on to the plate and sprinkle with toasted nigella seeds. Arrange the marron tails to the side of the puree and cover with zucchini. Top with garlic and chive flowers and dress lightly with olive oil.