Peter Russell-Clarke is one of Australia’s cooking institutions. When I first arrived here in 1982, I regularly watched his five-minute cooking show, Come and Get It, on television. Apparently there were more than 900 episodes broadcast over nine years.
Peter is an enthusiastic presenter, so his persona is larger than life. He was the chef for the Prince of Wales’ Silver Jubilee dinner.
In the 1970s, he was a spokesperson for the Victorian Egg Board and the Australia Dairy Corporation. I had forgotten that he’s also an accomplished painter, and has illustrated several books, including fiction titles for children. Tragically, his house burned down in April of this year and he lost much of his art collection. He and his wife were overseas at the time.
Peter has written (and often illustrated) more than 10 cookbooks and books on food. I bought this one secondhand for the hefty sum of $1.95. Here’s one of the three recipes on page 32.
250 grams shelled prawns
4 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon cream
1 tablespoon brandy
small pinch of cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoons mace
Separate the eggs and gently beat the yolks. De-vein the prawns and chop them finely Melt the butter in a large heavy frying pan. Put in the prawns, cream and egg yolks and stir over a low heat until it thickens, but don’t let it boil. Take the pan off the heat and add the brandy, salt, cayenne and mace. Butter 4 cocotte dishes or ramekins and fill them with the prawn mixture. Pop them in the fridge to chill and serve with hot bread.
How it played out
Peter Russell-Clarke should have a hotline, so I could call to ask what I should have done with the two egg whites. In the end, I beat one until it was frothy and added it to the frying pan in the last few minutes of cooking. Used the other for something else.