Moreton Bay Bug Mornay

Cook Time 45 minutes

Servings 6


6 Moreton Bay bugs

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, finely diced
1 garlic clove, finely diced
350ml fish stock
100g butter
65g plain flour
500ml milk
100g grated Gruyère cheese
100g yellow squash, finely diced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

If you have a blowtorch, you can finish off this dish by bruleeing the top of the mornay before serving.


Clean the cavity of the bug head and reserve the shells for presentation. Reserve the roe, then roughly chop the bug meat and set aside.

In a saucepan or pot, heat the oil and saute the onions and garlic until softened. Add the rest of the shells (i.e. claws and body) to the saucepan and crush the a wooden spoon to extract as much flavour as possible. Add the stock and simmer for 8-10 minutes. Pour everything into a food processor and blend together, then push liquid through a fine sieve.

In a separate pot, melt 80g of butter and add flour, whisking for a minute to cook off the raw flour taste. Then gradually add the milk, continuously whisking for a few minutes until smooth. Add a few spoonfuls of sieved bug stock and then whisk through the raw bug roe. Remove from the heat and stir through the cheese.

Melt 20g butter in a frying pan until lightly golden, then add the chopped bug meat and cook through. Add the diced squash and toss to combine, then remove from heat. Stir the bug meat mixture through the mornay sauce, and carefully fill the reserved, cleaned bug heads with the mixture to serve.


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