Chef Ludo Lefebvre has a clever way to bake snails in his fantastic, garlicky herb butter: He nestles the shells in a bed of rock salt so they don’t tip over. Snail shells are sold at most markets; alternatively, you can use an escargot baking dish or sauté the snails in the infused butter in a small pan.
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2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup minced parsley
2 tablespoons minced shallot
1 tablespoon dry white wine
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon Cognac
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
Rock salt, for baking
24 snail shells, rinsed and dried
24 canned giant snails, drained and rinsed
Crusty bread, for serving
How to Make It
In a bowl, blend the butter, parsley, shallot, wine, garlic, salt, Cognac, pepper and nutmeg. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight. Let return to room temperature before using.
Preheat the oven to 400°. Spread a 1/4-inch-thick layer of rock salt on a rimmed baking sheet. Pack 1/2 teaspoon of the butter into each escargot shell and stuff a snail inside. Fill with the remaining butter. Nestle the shells in the salt, butter side up.
Bake the snails for about 10 minutes, until the butter is bubbling. Serve hot with crusty bread.
The recipe can be prepared through Step 2 and refrigerated, covered, for 2 days. Bring to room temperature before using.
These garlicky snails are ideal with a crisp Chablis.
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