This dish – which combines prawn mousse, umami-packed “Namamite” and caviar – is the result of a drunken 2am conversation about wanting to create a version of the yum cha staple, prawn toast.

The Namamite was conceived earlier for another dish (which was then completely forgotten about), because once the Namamite found its way onto ebi toast, life was never quite the same). It was inspired by the similarity in smell between shio kombu (salted kelp) and Vegemite. We became obsessed with the idea of making a Japanese-inspired Vegemine and it all spiralled from there.

Finally: in 2020 we worked closely with the gentleman at Yarra Valley Caviar. As we tended the ponds and milked caviar from the fish, we had what alcoholics refer to as a “moment of clarity” and decided that caviar must be heaped on top of the Namamite. We are indulgent people and this is most certainly an indulgent dish.

Never miss a Melbourne moment. Make sure you're subscribed to our newsletter today.

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Ebi toast, by Caelan O’Rourke, Raphael Hyams and Geoff Marett of Nama

Serves 4–6
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes

Ingredients

400g Turkish bread
500g raw peeled frozen prawns, thawed
2 egg whites
I tsp hondashi powder
150g nama panko breadcrumbs
Vegetable oil, for deep-frying
Snipped chives, to serve
Sesame seeds, to serve
Yarra Valley caviar, to serve

Namamite
50g shio kombu
30ml tamari or soy sauce
30ml Chinkiang black vinegar
1 tbsp nori paste
2 tsp hot water

Method

To make the “Namamite”, pop the ingredients in a tall jug and use a stick blender to blitz until thick, but still a little loose. As the mixture cools, the natural gelatine in the nori will solidify, leaving you with a paste that looks glossier and slightly looser than Vegemite. In short, it should be easily spreadable.

Slice the Turkish bread into 16 pieces, about 2cm wide.

In the bowl of a food processer, blitz the prawns, egg whites and hondashi powder to a smooth consistency, then evenly spoon the mixture onto the cut sides of the Turkish bread.

Place the breadcrumbs on a large plate, then press the Turkish bread, prawn side down, into the breadcrumbs until evenly coated.

Heat enough vegetable oil for deep-frying a large saucepan to 180°C on a kitchen thermometer. Working in banches, add the ebi toast and cook for 3-4 minutes, turning halfway through cooking, until nice and crisp. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a wire rack with paper towel underneath to drain.

Gently brush the Namamite over the top of each ebi toast (use sparingly as it's very rich), then sprinkle with chives, sesame seeds and caviar (if using). Cut the toasts in half and serve immediately.

The left-over Namamite will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 month.

This is an extract from the Broadsheet cookbook Home Made, which features 80 diverse recipes for home cooking, sourced from Melbourne's best cooks, chefs and restaurants. Published by Plum, the book is available for $49.95 at shop.broadsheet.com.au