The firm flesh of abalones is highly prized in Asian circles, and is central to some of the best Oriental seafood recipes.
Abalone meat can be stir-fried, pan-fried, poached, steamed or stewed. However, it is considered by some to be best when eaten raw, in thin strips with wasabi and soy sauce.
Another option is braised abalone. With its absorbent texture that draws other flavours beautifully, braised abalone is traditionally prepared in the Cantonese cooking style using garlic, ginger and oyster sauce. If deep frying, the fritter is superb topped with a herb mayonnaise or minced into patties and coated with crumbs of garlic and onion. Citrus-marinated abalone combines well with shallots and parsley when pan-fried in oil or butter. Abalone also makes a wonderful addition to salads.
The best way to avoid loss of flavour and to tenderise the meat is to use the slow stewing style of cooking. Alternatively, fry it quickly on a high heat, or serve raw.
Canned abalone can be purchased from Chinese and other stores that sell imported Asian goods. It has a firm texture and does not need to be cooked. Drain the flesh, cut it up and add to a soup, casserole or stir-fry.
To Buy Greenlip Abalone:
Available in the shell (live or frozen), or as meat (frozen and vacuum-packed, or dried).
To Store Greenlip Abalone:
Abalone can be kept live for up to 3 days if stored in a deep-sided bucket covered with a hessian sack soaked in water and kept in the coolest part of the house. Alternatively, refrigerate for 2-3 days or freeze for up to 3 months below -18°C.
To Cook Greenlip Abalone:
Average yield is 35%. Use a short-bladed knife to slide around the edge between the flesh and the shell, remove meat and cut off intestine (the small sack attached to the underside). Rinse and dry. Cut off the small piece of gristle at the head end (next to the small antennas), trim off the frill and lip, turn over and cut a thin layer off the surface of the foot where it attached to the rock; trim all surfaces of any dark material. Under cold running water, using a small paring knife, scrape off the brown film remaining on the sides. Slice horizontally and tenderize by placing between two freezer bags and beating lightly with a meat mallet. Abalone’s main feature is its firm texture; it is low in oil and has a medium flavour and moisture. It is best cooked very quickly over a high heat (for just a few seconds) or braised very slowly (for up to 6 hours, depending on size).
Greenlip Abalone Cooking Methods:
Steam, poach, pan-fry, stir-fry, barbecue, braise, raw (sashimi). The cleaned shell can be used as a cooking vessel, especially if steaming, and as a serving vessel.
Greenlip Abalone goes well with:
The meat absorbs flavours well during cooking and is usually paired with simple flavours such as pan-frying in butter and parsley with a squeeze of lemon, or braising in oyster sauce with garlic and ginger.
- Bailer Shell – Sold whole. Look for brightly coloured, intact, lustrous shells, firm flesh, and a pleasant fresh sea smell.
- Their firm texture means Squids, Calamari and Cuttlefish can also sometimes be substituted for abalone