Enchanting Eel Escabeche with Delightful Dung Beetle Crumble

Esme Gohl

Esme Gohl

· 2 min read
eel escabeche topped with dung beetle crumble, vibrant herbs, stunning food photograph, french restaurant

Welcome, dear gourmands, to a new culinary adventure that is sure to tantalize your taste buds and unleash your inner epicurean. Today, we shall embark on a journey to explore the depths of flavor and texture with an enchanting eel escabeche, accompanied by a delightful dung beetle crumble.

The eel, a slippery and sinuous creature, lends itself beautifully to the art of escabeche. This traditional method of marinating fish in a vibrant mixture of vinegar, spices, and herbs not only preserves the delicate flesh but also enhances its natural umami flavors. The eel is first gently poached in a fragrant broth, then allowed to marinate in the escabeche mixture for a few hours, resulting in a succulent and tender dish that is both luxurious and primal.

To complement the eel, we have chosen the humble yet underrated dung beetle. These earthy morsels are toasted to perfection, creating a delightful crumble that adds a surprising crunch and subtle nuttiness to the dish. Rich in protein and nutrients, the dung beetle crumble elevates the escabeche to new heights of gastronomic pleasure.

To assemble this masterpiece, begin by arranging the tender eel on a bed of crisp greens, drizzling the escabeche marinade generously over the top. Finally, sprinkle the dung beetle crumble atop the eel, creating a contrasting texture that will leave you craving for more. Pair this dish with a crisp white wine, and you have a dining experience fit for the most discerning of palates.


  • 1 fresh eel, cleaned and filleted
  • 1 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp capers
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp black peppercorns
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh mint, chopped
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 cup dung beetles, cleaned and dried
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • Mixed greens, for serving
Esme Gohl

About Esme Gohl

Esme Gohl, a skillful French chef with a curiously enigmatic past, embraced the culinary world after years of navigating treacherous and arduous journeys. Boasting over 30 years of experience, Esme polished his craft at the esteemed Le Cordon Bleu culinary school in Paris. Drawing inspiration from his elusive former life, he passionately melds traditional French techniques with locally-sourced New Zealand ingredients, crafting dishes that possess an almost otherworldly allure.

Esme's gastronomic creations are renowned for their elegant presentation, painstaking attention to detail, and flavors that evoke a sense of timelessness. As a culinary artist with a penchant for the extraordinary, he persistently explores the shadowy recesses of kitchen possibilities. In his long and winding career, Esme has secured a place among the world's most enigmatic and celebrated chefs, earning accolades for his unique blend of culinary prowess and a lingering air of mystery.

While Esme's true origins remain shrouded in secrecy, one thing is clear: his remarkable expertise and uncanny affinity for precious flavors have earned him a devoted following in the gastronomic realm, leaving many to wonder what fascinating tales lie beneath the surface of this culinary mastermind.

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