These impaled garlic butter snails were the slimy starter at Heston's Gothic Feast. Try them yourself with his recipe.

Ingredients

For the braised snails

  • 100g Roman snails
  • 1kg water
  • 120g onions, halved
  • 40g split carrots
  • 1/2 garlic bulb (split vertically)
  • 90g trimmed leeks, halved
  • 2 celery sticks
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 50g rosemary
  • 50g parsley
  • 50g thyme
  • For the garlic butter
  • 100g shallots, finely sliced
  • 20g garlic, very finely chopped
  • 230g butter (at room temperature)
  • 15g flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • To prepare the snails
  • Thinly sliced lardo
  • For the tempura batter
  • 50g cornflour
  • 50g plain flour
  • 2g bicarbonate of soda
  • 5g salt
  • 120g iced water
  • To serve
  • Grapeseed or groundnut oil, for deep-frying
  • MethodTo make the braised snails1. Rinse the snails in several changes of fresh water until all the grit has been removed. Preheat the oven to 120°C. Place all the remaining ingredients in a flameproof casserole dish and bring to a simmer on the stove.2. Place the snails in the simmering liquid, cover and cook in the oven for 3-4 hours or until the snails are soft and tender. Remove from the oven and let the snails cool in the liquid in the casserole dish. Remove the snails and trim away the intestine and white sac. Refrigerate the snails until needed.To make the garlic butter3. In a sauté pan, sweat the shallots and garlic in 30g of the butter. Once softened, leave to cool.4. Once cool, mix in the chopped parsley and remaining butter. Transfer the garlic butter to a container and refrigerate until needed.To prepare the snails5. Wearing gloves, rub the garlic butter into the snails so that they are well covered. Allow to set in the fridge.6. Wrap the buttered snails in the slices of lardo. Keep chilled until needed.To make the tempura batter7. Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl. Add the iced water and gently incorporate the dry ingredients using chopsticks or a fork, being very careful not to overmix as this will create lumps. Place the bowl of batter over an ice bath to keep it cold.To serve8. Heat the oil in a deep-fat fryer to 180°C. Dip the prepared snails in the tempura batter and deep-fry until golden brown and crispy. Drain on kitchen paper and impale each snail with a toothpick to serve.