Warm vegetable stalk salad with lobster, cream of lettuce and iodized sauce

Ensalada tibia de tuétanos de verdura con bogavante, crema de lechuga de caserío
Martín Berasategui
Chef: Martín Berasategui
Country: España
City: 20160 Lasarte-Oria (Guipúzcoa)
Address: Loidi, 4
(+34) 943366471

Time has blessed him with an achievement that can be only described as divine.

It is exceptional for its ingredients, its gustative purity, its lightness, its technique, its colorfulness… and, above all, because it represents a different way of looking at salad. Berasategui, perfectionist that he is, goes beyond creation and reinvents his cuisine on a daily basis. In this way, little by little, he has altered this creation to its present richness as if it were a flat topped, square-shaped mosaic. It gives the impression of being inspired in Michel Bras’s Gargouillou, but in reality it has nothing to do with the Laguiole chef’s recipe. It is composed of ingredients deeply rooted in Spanish culture and presented in original forms: tomato hearts, cream of lettuce, very finely sliced spring onion, beans and asparagus sautéed differently, cauliflower and broccoli stalks… as well as more recent ones, such as avocado in spiral shapes and fresh almonds… to which are added a few lobster medallions to round out such an assorted salad, and an iodized mollusk sauce made with delicious clams, cockles, murexes, etc., and finished with a gelatinous tomato infusion.

The Recipe


  • 1 1.15kg lobster, cooked, shelled and cut into 12 thick medallions

For the tomato infusion

  • 3kg ripe tomatoes
  • 30g fine salt
  • 40g sugar

For the asparagus:

  • 6 asparagus tipssalt and olive oil

For the cauliflower and broccoli stalk:

  • 2 or 3 cauliflower and broccoli stalks, well pealed

For the tomato hearts

  • 12 medium tomatoes

For the sautéed beans:

  • 280g small broad beans
  • 100g fresh spring onion
  • Virgin olive oil
  • Salt

For the cream of lettuce:

  • 200g country lettuce
  • 200g stock
  • 150g spring onion
  • 15g butter

For the iodized sauce:

  • 2 shallots
  • 200g dry white wine
  • 250g double cream
  • 100g mussel juice
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 thyme sprig
  • 100g cockles
  • 60g clams
  • 6 oysters, finely chopped
  • 6 bulots/murexes


  • 12 fresh almonds, pealed
  • 1/2 avocado, pealed and sliced with a pealer
  • 1/2 small fresh spring onion, very finely sliced



For the tomato infusion: Wash the tomatoes, remove the stems and cut into sixths. Add the salt and sugar and knead well by hand until the mixture turns to liquid (5 minutes). Strain through a cloth and strainer, with a weight on top to add pressure and squeeze out the juice, for at least 12 hours in the refrigerator. Once well strained, we are left with a transparent liquid—a wonderful tomato juice.Use 2g of agar-agar for each liter of infusion. Heat 10% of the infusion and add the agar-agar. It must boil to then be mixed with the rest of the infusion, which should be at 35ºC. Spread over each plate (30g per serving) and leave to set.

For the sautéed asparagus: Cut the asparagus into 4 pieces and sauté in a hot pan with a little oil and salt. Turn them over once.

For the cauliflower-broccoli stalk: Square the stalks and machine slice them as finely as possible. Place them in ice water to make them crunchier. Dress with an olive oil, cider vinegar and salt vinaigrette (three parts oil to one part vinegar).

For the tomato hearts: Cut the bases and tops of the tomatoes and remove the flesh around the hearts (the heart is the seeds with the surrounding flesh in the center). The tomatoes must be ripe and preferably aromatic. Set aside at least 12 gelatinous tomato hearts.
For the sautéed beans: Finely chop the onion and gently poach. Once poached, transfer to a pan and add the beans. Remove from heat, turn over a few times and salt to taste. Quickly drain the oil.

For the cream of lettuce: Julienne the spring onion and lightly fry in butter to sweat. Pour in the stock and boil for 15 minutes over low heat. Mix in the blanched, cold lettuce.Puree in a blender and strain through a fine mesh sieve. Refrigerate.

For the iodized sauce: Poach the shallot and finely chopped garlic. Deglaze with the wine and mussel juice, reduce to half its volume, mix in the double cream and cook for 10 minutes.Add the cold mollusks and stir the mixture as if you were making cod with pil-pil so that it emulsifies. Strain the juice and set aside, ready for use.

*Pre-cooking for the bulots: First, it is very important to wash them well. This should be done in 6 cold salt-water baths—they should spend 5 minutes resting in each bath for a total of 30 minutes. This removes all mucous and sand. Once clean, cook them in salted water for 30 minutes and allow to cool in the same water so that they do not dry out. Drain and use them to make the iodized sauce.

Additionally: Quarter the avocado and cut three slices with a vegetable peeler. Curl and arrange on the plate. Dress with salt and olive oil just before serving.

For the spring onion, once sliced place in an ice water bath. Drain well on a towel and place 2 slices in each salad. Dress with salt and oil.


QUATRUM dish containing the previously spread gelatinized tomato in the oven so that the gelatin warms. Arrange the rest of the ingredients on top in the following way: on 2 ends, 2 lobster medallions; on the 2 remaining ends, 2 tomato hearts previously dressed with olive oil; in the center, a bit of lettuce puree topped with the sautéed asparagus and almonds.
The dressed stalks go in the center rising quite high and surrounded by the sautéed beans and iodized sauce. Also arrange the avocado and spring onion.

NOTE: This process needs to be done quickly so that the gelatinized tomato arrives at the table warm