Seafood Bruschetta

Ingredients

8 ounces clams, in shell
8 ounces mussels, in shell
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
6 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
6 cloves garlic, 4 finely chopped, 2 whole
4 ounces shrimp (prawn tails) peeled and deveined
4 ounces squid, cleaned and coarsely chopped
4 tomatoes, peeled and finely chopped
salt and freshly ground black pepper
8 slices firm-textured bread

Method

  1. Soak the clams and mussels in cold water for 1 hour Scrub the mussels.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  3. Place the shellfish in a large frying pan over medium heat and cook until they open. Discard any that do not open.
  4. Remove the clams and mussels from their shells.
  5. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large frying pan over medium heat and saute the parsley and half the chopped garlic for 2-3 minutes.
  6. Turn the heat to high and add the shrimp and squid and saute for 5 minutes (not longer or the squid will become leathery). Set aside.
  7. In a separate pan, heat 2 tablespoons of oil with the remaining chopped garlic and tomatoes and simmer for 10 minutes.
  8. Add the clams and mussels, season with salt and pepper, and simmer until the shellfish are cooked, 2-3 minutes.
  9. Toast the bread in the oven until crisp and golden brown.
  10. Rub the toast with the whole cloves of garlic and drizzle with the remaining oil.
  11. Top with the seafood and serve warm.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Modern Mediterranean Cooking

Crab and Avocado Toast

Ingredients

6 ounces crabmeat (preferably jumbo lump), drained and picked free of shells
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro (coriander) leaves
1 scallion (spring onion), light green and white parts only, finely chopped
2 teaspoons mayonnaise
1/4 teaspoon kosher (coarse) salt, plus more as needed
Four 3/4-inch thick slices rustic bread
Extra-virgin olive oil, for the bread

Guasacaca

1 avocado, halved, pit discarded
juice of 1/2 lime
1/4 cup tomatillo salsa
1/4 teaspoon kosher (coarse) salt, plus more if needed

Method

  1. Make the guasacaca: In a blender, combine the avocado, lime juice, salsa, and salt and pulse until mostly pureed. (Or you can smash the avocado, then stir in the lime juice, salsa, and salt for a chunkier version.) Taste and add more salt if needed.
  2. Make the toast: Set the crab meat in a medium bowl and using your fingers, fluff it into shards.
  3. Add the cilantro, scallion, mayonnaise, and salt and use a fork to gently combine the ingredients, doing your best not to break up the crab meat into tiny bits.
  4. Toast the bread.
  5. To serve, top each toast with guasacaca and crab meat.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Toast

Scallops on Noodles

Ingredients

4 oz dried green tea noodles, or the thinnest green noodles you can find
1 oz butter
1 garlic clove, crushed
pinch of paprika
1 tbsp peanut or corn oil, plus a little extra for cooking the scallops
2 tbsp bottled mild or medium Thai green curry paste
2 tbsp water
2 tsp light soy sauce
2 scallions, finely shredded, and extra scallions, sliced, to garnish
12 fresh scallops, removed from the shells
salt and pepper

Method

  1. Boil the noodles for about 1-1/2 minutes, until soft, then rinse with cold water and drain well. For any other noodles, follow the package instructions. Drain and set aside.
  2. Melt the butter and cook the garlic in it for about 1 minute. Add the paprika and set aside.
  3. Heat a wok over high heat. Add the oil. Stir in the curry paste, water, and soy sauce and bring to a boil.
  4. Add the noodles and stir round to reheat. Stir in the scallions, then remove from the heat and keep warm.
  5. Heat a ridged, cast-iron grill pan over high heat and brush lightly with a little oil. Add the scallops to the pan and cook for 3 minutes on the first side, then no more than 2 minutes on the second, brushing with the garlic butter, until just cooked (the center shouldn’t be totally opaque if cut open). Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Divide the noodles into 4 portions and top with 3 scallops each. Garnish with spring onions before serving.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Noodles

Chinese-style Love Birds Shrimp

Ingredients

1-1/4 lb large shrimp
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 egg white, beaten
oil for deep-frying
1/4 lb snow peas, ends trimmed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 scallion, finely chopped
1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
1 tablespoon Shaoxing rice wine
1/2 teaspoon roasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon chile bean paste (toban jiang)
1 tablespoon tomato paste

Method

  1. Peel and devein the shrimp, leaving the tails intact.
  2. Combine the cornstarch with enough Water to make a paste. Stir in the egg white and a pinch of salt, then stir in the shrimp.
  3. Fill a wok one quarter full of oil. Heat the oil to 350°F, or until a piece of bread fries golden brown in 15 seconds when dropped in the oil. Cook the shrimp for 1 minute, stirring to separate them. Remove the shrimp from the wok with a wire strainer or slotted spoon as soon as the color changes, then drain. Pour the oil out, reserving 1 tablespoon.
  4. Reheat the reserved oil over high heat until very hot and stir-fry the snow peas with the salt and sugar for 1-1/2 minutes. Remove and place in the center of a serving platter.
  5. Reheat the wok again and stir-fry the scallion and ginger for a few seconds. Add the shrimps, soy sauce and rice wine, blend well and stir-fry for about 30 seconds, then add the sesame oil. Transfer about half of the shrimp to one end of the serving platter.
  6. Add the chile bean paste and tomato puree to the remaining shrimps, blend well, tossing to coat the shrimp, then transfer the shrimp to the other end of the platter.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: The Food of China

Coconut Prawn Soup

Ingredients

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
800 ml coconut milk
1/4 cup fish sauce
fresh coriander leaves, to garnish
thinly sliced lime rind, to garnish

Curry Paste

6 long dried red chillies
2 teaspoons coriander seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
4 red Asian shallots, chopped
4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon sliced fresh ginger
4 fresh coriander roots, well rinsed
2 tablespoons chopped fresh coriander stems
1 teaspoon grated lime rind
2 stems lemon grass, white part only, sliced (reserve the stems for the stock)
2 fresh kaffir lime leaves, thinly shredded
I teaspoon shrimp paste
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Stock

700 g raw medium prawns
4 red Asian shallots, chopped
1 clove garlic
reserved grassy ends of lemon grass stems
6 black peppercorns

Method

  1. To make the curry paste, soak the chillies in boiling water for 20 minutes, then drain. Toss the spices and peppercorns in a dry frying pan over medium heat for 1 minute, or until fragrant. Grind to a powder, then transfer to a food processor and add the remaining paste ingredients and 1 teaspoon salt. Process until smooth, adding a little water, if necessary.
  2. Peel and devein the prawns, leaving the tails intact. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Reserve the heads and shells.
  3. To make the stock, dry-fry the prawn heads and shells in a wok over high heat for 5 minutes, or until orange. Add the remaining stock ingredients and 1.5 litres water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat, simmer for 15-20 minutes, then strain into a bowl.
  4. Heat a clean, dry wok over medium heat, add the oil and swirl to coat the side. Add 3 tablespoons of the curry paste and stir constantly over medium heat for 1-2 minutes, or Until fragrant. Stir in the stock and coconut milk and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the prawns and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes, or until they are cooked. Stir in the fish sauce and garnish with coriander leaves and lime rind.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: The Essential Wok Cookbook