Tiffany Case gives James Bond’s suggestion of shellfish and Hock, reputedly a combination with aphrodisiacal properties, short shrift at the ’21’ Club in Diamonds are Forever (1956). She tells him that it would take more than crabmeat ravigotte to get her into bed with him. Ravigotte (more usually ravigote) is a vinaigrette-based sauce. As Tiffany Case’s remark implies, crabmeat ravigote would have been regarded as a sophisticated dish at the time that Ian Fleming was writing. It graced the menus of top hotels and restaurants, among them the Waldorf Astoria in New York (a 1953 menu prices the dish at $1.85) and the St Regis Hotel, also in New York and Bond’s hotel in Live and Let Die.
- 200g crabmeat (drained, if tinned)
For the sauce
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp white wine vinegar
- 2-3 drops lemon juice
- 1 tsp shallot, finely chopped
- 1 tsp parsley, finely chopped
- 1 tsp tarragon, finely chopped
- 1 tsp chives, finely chopped
- 1 tsp gherkin, finely chopped
- 1 tsp capers, finely chopped
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- A pinch of black pepper
Put all the ingredients for the sauce in a bowl and whisk or stir until they are well combined and the sauce is thick and creamy. Fold in the crabmeat, making sure that the meat is well coated. Spoon the mixture into two small bowls or, better still, cleaned crab shells.