Category Archives: Seafood

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Mini Fish Bites

Mini-Fish-Bites-webThis recipe is so versatile as you can make mini-fish cakes or patties for kids or flavour it up for adults.

Ingredients

500g baking potatoes or sweet potato
1 leek or large brown onion, finely chopped
1 tbsp butter, plus 2 tbsp for frying
200g frozen peas
300ml milk
300g firm white fish, smoked fish is also great
4 spring onions, chopped (or chives …or both)1 tbsp
fresh thyme, ½ dried thyme. I love lemon thyme in this recipe
2 tbsp grated parmesan
Salt and black pepper
1 tbsp olive oil, for frying

Additions for adult version

2 tbsp fish sauce
1 chilli, seeded and chopped fine
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger

For the coating

4 tbsp plain flour
2 free range eggs, beaten with a dash of milk
8 tbsp fine dried crumbs or polenta

Method

Wash the potatoes well, but leave the skins on and put in a pan. Cover with cold salted water, bring to a simmer for about 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are cooked through.

While the potatoes are boiling, cook the leek/onion in a shallow pan in the butter for about 5 minutes, until soft. Add the peas and cook for another 5 minutes. Tip into a bowl and mash roughly so some of the peas break up.

Drain the potatoes well. Allow them to cool a little in a colander so that the excess moisture escapes as steam. When you can handle the potatoes, remove the skin with a small knife – it should scrape off easily.

Pour the milk into the same pan that you used for the leek/onion, thyme, (aduly flavours if using) and place the fish fillets in the milk. Bring to a simmer, then turn the fish over when the milk comes up to the boil. Turn down the heat and cook for a further minute before removing from the heat.

Mash the potatoes roughly, or pass them through a potato ricer. Add the pea mix.

Flake the fish flesh into the potato-pea mix along with 2 tbsp of the cooking milk. Err on the side of a drier mix to ensure that the cakes do not collapse when you fry them.

Add the spring onions and parmesan, then fold all the ingredients together with a spoon. Season well with salt and pepper.

Allow the mix to cool thoroughly and shape into small balls or fishcakes with floured hands – they can be as big or as small as you like.

Arrange the coating ingredients in 3 separate bowls, starting with flour, then the egg-milk mix and finally the breadcrumbs.

Coat the first cake or ball in the flour, then transfer to the egg mix and finally, coat carefully in breadcrumbs or polenta. Place the finished fishcakes on a tray and refrigerate until needed. Make sure they are good and cold. This will also stop them collapsing.

To cook heat up the butter and oil in a large shallow frying pan. Having a mix of butter and oil will stop the butter burning. Carefully place each cake in the pan and fry over a medium heat for 3 minutes on each side. They can be served straight away or transferred to a low oven until serving.

I serve with a sweet chilli sauce. Sweet and sour sauce is also great.

Smoked Salmon Pate

smoked-salmon-webIngredients

150g smoked salmon, trimmings are fine

200g tub soft cheese

1 tbsp crème fraîche, only if you have some

juice half a lemon

zest ½ lemon

1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon fresh chives, chopped fine

1 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped fine

1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped fine

Method

If you aren’t using smoked salmon trimmings then chop the salmon into small pieces. Tip the soft cheese, mustard, crème fraîche (if using) zest and lemon juice into a food processor, season generously with black pepper and blitz to your liking. Add the smoked salmon and pulse a few times if you want the paté chunky or blitz some more if you want the paté smooth and pink.

Stir the herbs into the paté and spoon into a large or four smaller bowls and serve on slices of cucumber or as dip with vegetable sticks.

Slow Roasted Salmon with Fresh Salsa and Coconut Rice

Salmon-Salsa-webServes 4 as a main

This recipe is a “go to” for me when I am entertaining. Its tastes, colours and textures will impress.

Start cooking the salmon, then the rice and make the salsa while they are both cooking and it will all come together. 

The rice can be left out if required as the salmon and salsa are the heroes in this dish

Slow Roasted Salmon Fillets

Ingredients
3 tbsp soft honey
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp lime zest
1 tsp salt
4 skinless, Regal Marlborough King Salmon fillets (about 120g each)
Fresh ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 120°C (100°C fan) with a rack placed in the centre.
Line a baking tray with foil and brush with good olive or avocado oil. 

In a small bowl combine the honey, sugar, zest and salt. Place the salmon fillets evenly on the baking sheet and brush the tops with half of the sauce. Season with pepper to taste.

Roast in the oven for 20 to 40 minutes depending on how thick the salmon is.

Change the oven to grill, brush the remaining glaze on the salmon, and grill the glazed fillets for about 3-5 minutes. I place them back in the oven about 75mm (3 inches) from the heat.

Once the fillet top has coloured up remove from the oven and rest for 3-5 minutes.

Coconut Rice

3 cups of good quality Jasmine Rice, well-rinsed
3 cups cold water
400ml can coconut cream
3cm piece ginger, peeled, sliced in half
½ tsp sea salt

Place all ingredients in a large saucepan over high heat and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.

Reduce the heat to low and simmer, covered for 10 minutes and then remove from heat.

Stand covered, for an aditional10 minutes and then discard the ginger before serving.

Salsa

2 medium tomato, chopped
2 ripe mangos, chopped
2 bell peppers (yellow and/or red)
1 bunch of coriander, rough chopped
1 small red onion, finely chopped
2 jalapenos (ribs and seeds removed), finely chopped (optional)
1/3 cup of apple cider vinegar
2 limes, juiced
1 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl. If possible, make ahead a couple of hours before and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Serving

Warm 4 plates with the oven switched off once the salmon is removed to rest.

Take the warmed plates and place a fillet in the centre of each one. Place 2 tbsp of rice both side of each fillet and top with 1-2 tbsp of salsa. Serve straight away.

Seafood Chowder

sf-chowderServes 2 as a main course or 4 as a starter

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil

1 medium onion, finely chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

½ diced bacon (optional)

600ml milk

400ml fish stock

1 tbsp fresh chopped thyme

2 medium potatoes or sweet potatoes, peeled and finely diced

1 tsp chilli flakes (optional)

450g (1lb) smoked fish, skinned

225g (1/2lb) raw peeled prawns

1 cup whole corn kernels

Lemon juice, to taste

Freshly ground black pepper

1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped

Method

Heat the oil in a large heavy pan. Add the onion, garlic, bacon and cook gently for 10 minutes until the onion is soft. Add the milk and stock and bring to a simmer.

Add the potatoes or sweet potatoes, thyme, chilli flakes and cook on a light simmer for about 10 minutes or until they are soft. Keep the heat gentle as you do this.

Cut the smoked fish into bite-sized pieces and add to the pan with the corn kernels. Cook very gently for 2 minutes, then add the prawns, lemon juice and salt and pepper. Cook for a further 2-3 minutes, taste and season, stir in the parsley and serve.

Optional: You can add 2 cups of smoked, chopped mussels when adding the prawns for added, smoky flavour.

Pan Fried Trout with Passionfruit Dressing

Pan-Fried-Trout-webRemove the pulp from two ripe purple passion fruit and push it through a strainer to remove the seeds. You should have about two tablespoons of thick extract. 

Ingredients 

For the passionfruit dressing 

2 tbsp thick passion fruit extract

1 tsp sugar or honey

3 tbsp neutral tasting oil (Sunflower oil)

A few sprigs of fresh coriander, leaves only (save the stems)

1/4 tsp freshly grated young ginger

1/4 tsp finely sliced hot green chilli

Salt to taste

Chop the coriander leaves finely and whisk all the ingredients together to make an emulsion. Set aside. Whisk again just before serving. 

For the fish 

Serves 2 

1 medium to large trout, cleaned

1/2 cup finely chopped shallots

1/2 cup Olive oil

2 tbsp butter

salt and pepper

Finely chopped coriander stems 

Method 

Pat the cleaned fish dry and then rub a mixture of salt, pepper and chopped coriander stems over and inside the fish. 

Heat the oil and butter in a pan (you can bake or grill the fish too, but trout loves this butter bath!) and add the shallots. 

Stir for a minute, then add the fish. Cook both sides on medium heat, 5-6 minutes each side. Remove to a platter and serve it up by removing the meat from each side of the fish with a side of roasted tomatoes or creamy mashed potatoes and a dollop of the passion fruit dressing over the fish.
 

It also makes a terrific salad dressing – perfumed, sharp and with just a little bite.

Scallops and Mushrooms with Passion Fruit Vinaigrette

scallops-mushrooms-2-webScallops and Mushrooms with Passion Fruit Vinaigrette served on Parsnip Purée.

Combined recipes serves 4 as a starter.

This is a wonderful time of the year, harvest season and New Zealand grown passion fruit are one of my loved produce.

The first thing we have to make is the passion fruit vinaigrette as it develops while its resting.

If you like you can use pulp from whole passion fruits with the pips in for added crunch and texture. I like the vinaigrette this way. If you don’t them, the seeds then place the pulp from the fruit in a fine sieve over a bowl and with the back of  teaspoon pass the pulp through the sieve into the bowl.

Passion Fruit Vinaigrette

Ingredients

3/4 cup passion fruit juice, strained, no seeds or with seeds as above.
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
Zest from one lime
1/3 runny honey
1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme. Lemon thyme is great
sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
1 cup olive oil

Method

Mix passion fruit juice, mustard, honey, zest, vinegar, thyme, salt and pepper in a blender or whisk briskly. If you are including the seeds whisk only. Do not combine in a blender.

Slowly drizzle in the olive oil whisking until all of the oil has been added and the ingredients have emulsified, come together.

Taste for seasoning and adjust as required. 

Parsnip Puree

This can be made just before the scallops. Its a classic and well worth the energy to prepare as a bed for the final dish.

Ingredients 

200 g parsnip, finely sliced
300 ml full cream milk
1 bay leaf
1-2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
sea salt & freshly ground black pepper

Method 

In a medium sized pot over a medium heat add the milk, parsnip and bay leaf and bring to a simmer. When the parsnip is cooked, about ten minutes transfer parsnip and half the milk into a blender, pulse a few time, season with sea salt & freshly ground pepper, then add extra virgin olive oil and pulse. Leave to rest in warm place. 

Scallops with Mushrooms 

12 large or 16 small scallops
160 g chanterelle  or small brown button mushrooms
3 tsp olive oil
1 tsp butter
1 clove garlic, peeled and finely minced
2 tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley 
salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ cup Passion Fruit Vinaigrette 

Rinse the scallops and dry them thoroughly. Place them between two layers of paper towels, pat dry, and repeat with fresh towels. It’s very important to make sure the scallops are completly dry so when they hit the heat they will caramelise and develop great colour. If they are too damp they will poach in the oil and butter. Set aside. 

Brush the mushrooms with a pastry brush to remove any earthy bits that may be clinging to them. This is the best way to clean them, for they will retain all of their earthy flavour.  

Delicately trim off the earthy bottoms off the mushroom stems, retaining as much of each mushroom as possible. Slice the largest mushrooms in half. 

Heat 1 tsp of olive oil on a medium high heat in a large,  heavy-bottomed skillet or frypan. Add the mushrooms and sauté over high heat, stirring very gently. Cook for about 3 minutes until they begin to release their juices. Add a pinch of salt and grind in some black pepper, stir and set aside in a warm bowl with all the juices from the skillet. Give the skillet a quick wipe, no need to wash. 

Assemble the minced garlic and chopped parsley on a small plate next to the stove.

Heat the remaining 2 tsp of olive oil in the heavy-bottomed frying pan. When it;s hot but not smoking add the butter. Let it melt, combine with the oil and then add the scallops.  

Allow the scallops to sear over high heat for one minute, not much longer. Do not disturb them while they are cooking as we want them to develop wonderful colour.

Flip them over after 1 minute, they should have a nice golden brown colour on the side tat was on the heat. Cook the same was for one minute. Add the minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds to allow the garlic to release a sweet flavour. We don’t want to cook the garlic on heat for too long.

Add the cooked mushrooms and allow them to heat through for another minute. Turn off the heat and.

Add the chopped parsley and Passion Fruit Vinaigrette and stir to combine, gently. We want to ensure the vinaigrette coats all of the ingredients but not stiring it to a point where the mushrooms break apart.
On warmed plates spread a heaped tbsp of the still warm parsnip purée. Arrange portions of the scallops on top of the parsnip purée. When all of the plates are prepared spread and drizzle the rest of the mushrooms and juices over the plates.

Serve immediately, accompanied by a side salad of diced fresh tomatoes and mixed salad greens that have been seasoned with some fresh chopped basil and olive oil.

Mixed Seafood Salad with Avocado Lime Dressing

Seafood-Salad-Avocado-webIngredients 

Serves 2 

4 raw scallops, patted very dry

4 large cooked shrimps, tail on

4 cooked mussels

Salt and fresh ground pepper

1-2 tbsp oil, I use olive oil 

1 tomato sliced in quarters with pulp/seeds removed and sliced into small cubes, divided

1 small cucumber sliced and diced into small cubes, divided 

Dressing 

Makes 2 serves 

1 ripe avocado
2 tbsp fresh lime juice

2 – 3 tbsp olive oil or avocado oil

1/2 tsp minced garlic

½ tsp ground cumin.

 

Method 

Make the dressing/base by mashing up 1 ripe avocado and then add the rest of the dressing ingredients and whisk till smooth. You don’t want it too runny. 

Heat some oil in a skillet over medium high heat and add the scallops, cook for 1 minute then turn. Add the cooked shrimps and mussels, cook for 1 minute, turning once. Remove from the heat and lightly season with salt and pepper. 

On two warm plates place 1 tbsp of the avocado dressing in the centre of each and with the back of the teaspoon flatten it out into a small circle.

On one side of the circle place the divided cucumber and tomato then arrange the seafood over the place dressing and serve straight away.

Easy Seafood Stew

seafood-stew-webIngredients 

2 tins of chopped tomatoes

½ cup white wine (optional)

½ cup stock (any kind)

1-2 cloves of garlic

½ red capsicum, sliced into bite sized pieces

Dry or fresh chilli to taste (optional)

1 can of canelinni beans

Juice of ½ lemon

1/3 cup chopped parsley

Salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

Aprox 300 grams seafood sliced into bite sized pieces (fish, prawns, squid, etc) 

Method 

Combine the tomatoes, wine, stock, garlic, capsicum and chilli in a dutch oven or heavy based saucepan and bring to a simmer. 

Simmer on a low heat for 20 minutes then add diced seafood and beans to the sauce. 

When the seafood is cooked (should be only 2 or 3 minutes), add lemon juice, cracked pepper and parsley. 

Serve in warm bowls with crusty bread (optional).

Grilled Salmon Salad

Salmon-Salad-webIngredients 

For the fish

2 150g (6 oz) salmon fillets, skin on
salt and pepper to season
olive oil 

For the salad

6-8 cups fresh baby greens
1 small orange, peeled and sectioned
1/2 cucumber, peeled and diced
1 small Roma tomato, diced
1/4 cup green or red bell pepper, diced
a few medium slices of red onion
2/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes, thinly sliced
salt and freshly ground black pepper 

For vinaigrette

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 tbsp red wine vinegar
juice from half of a lemon (about 1 tbsp, or you could use more wine vinegar)

1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 to 2 tbsp freshly chopped dill

1/4 tsp honey (can omit if you want a more tangy dressing)
1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

sprig of fresh dill for garnish, optional 

Method 

Brush salmon fillets with olive oil and season salt and pepper and set aside for 15 minutes.

Prepare vinaigrette, add all ingredients except for fresh dill into a blender cup and blend for 30 seconds or until emulsified. Add in dill and stir until well combined. Set aside and let flavours meld. 

Heat a fry pan over a medium-high. Place salmon in pan skin side down and let cook for 4 minutes. Hold the salmon fillets flat on the pan for 15-20 seconds or until they don’t curl up on the ends. 

Using a spatula, carefully turn fillets over and let cook another 3-4 minutes until cooked through, do not over cook as while the salmon is resting its still cooking with its residual heat. 

Let it rest for a few minutes while you assemble the salad. 

Assemble salad by placing greens in the bowl, top with chopped vegetables and fan the orange sections. Top with cook salmon and sprinkle with a small pinch of salt (optional) and freshly ground black pepper. Drizzle with prepared vinaigrette and enjoy!

Wined Shrimp Starter

wine-shrimp-starter-webThis dish makes a great starter or easy snack for two and with only a light season and flavour addition the seafood is able to speak for itself. 

Ingredients 

2 tbsp grass fed butter

500g (1.1lb) medium or large uncooked shrimps, peeled, deveined and patted dry.

1/3 cup dry Madeira or Marsala. (Dry sherry will do)

juice and zest of 1 lemon

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

salt & freshly ground black pepper

chopped parsley or chives for garnish 

Method 

In a frying pan or large skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat until foamy but not browned, please do not let it burn. 

Increase heat to high, add shrimp to pan all at once and sauté, tossing and stirring constantly, until shrimp is pink and almost cooked through (about 3 to 4 minutes). 

With a slotted spoon, remove shrimp from pan and set aside. 

Turn heat down to medium, add the wine and cook, stirring constantly, until the wine and butter are integrated and have formed a glossy, bubbling and slightly thickened sauce. 

Add the lemon juice, lemon zest, cayenne, salt & pepper and continue cooking and stirring until lemon juice is integrated and sauce thickens up again (about 1 minute). 

Return reserved shrimp to the pan and cook, tossing the shrimp until they are well coated with the sauce. 

Serve straight away garnished with minced fresh parsley or chives.

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