In the warmer months, ‘cooking dinner’ can seem like a daunting and unappealing task, but never fear! Preparing a fresh seafood meal can be as easy as assembling some great ingredients. Smaller snacks are much better suited to a warm evening than a big, hot, hearty meal, and they are so simple to prepare.
We have collated 10 delicious spring snack options for you to try – perfect for BBQ’s, picnics, spring entertaining, or just a quick and nutritious work-from-home lunch. Check this out for some spring inspiration.
Snapper Tartare with Ruby Grapefruit
Fresh, zesty, and mild, this recipe is a great introduction for those hesitant about eating raw fish. Snapper has a mild taste, and when combined with a selection of punchy herbs and citrus, its fishy flavour is just barely noticeable. For picnics, simply combine your sashimi and herb mix in a container, and spoon it onto the baguette slices when you are ready to eat.
Sashimi is certainly deserving of multiple entries on this list – it is so refreshing on a warm spring day, and it can be enjoyed in so many different ways. Dishes such as this are often called ‘carpaccio’, which is raw beef drizzled with a lemony mayonnaise (named for the brilliant reds and whites common in the paintings of Renaissance artist Vittore Carpaccio). If you can’t find sashimi-grade Swordfish, Snapper, Kingfish, or even Scallops would work just as well.
Pan-fried Australian Sardines
Common in Tapas bars along the Spanish coast, ‘Sardinas fritas’ are a quick, salty snack that combine perfectly with an ice cold beer of a spring afternoon. They only require a very quick frying in a pan, so you won’t be spending hours in the kitchen, and they pack a nutritional punch. To save yourself the fuss, purchase butterflied Sardines, which are available pre-packaged from most fishmongers. Just make sure they are Australian!
Squid & Fennel Bruschetta
Bruschetta is a great appetiser to serve with drinks, and a delicious snack or light meal at any time. Toppings are limited only by your imagination! Squid is a great option, and for ease, you can purchase it already cut into rings. When cooking your squid on the BBQ or in a pan, you should only cook it very briefly, and on a very high heat, lest it become tough and rubbery.
Oysters with Shallot Vinaigrette
Oysters are nature’s perfect snack. Packed with vitamins, minerals, and protein, and coming ready in their own serving platter, they are a great easy option for a hot day. While purists prefer their Oysters freshly shucked with no adornment except perhaps a squeeze of lemon juice, some people prefer to dress them up with a zingy dressing. The options here are endless, but something tart like vinegar or soy always works beautifully.
Vietnamese Fresh Rice Paper Rolls
While rice paper rolls do require a bit of prep, their refreshing crunch is so worth it. Prawns have a great texture for this recipe, and also look beautiful when placed on the outside of the roll. You can even use little school prawns to save some money. The rice paper will keep the filling fresh for hours, making these perfect for picnics.
Prawns with Mango & Chilli Dipping Sauce
Cooked prawns are so simple and easy to enjoy on a warm day. They can be peeled and eaten as is at the table, but you can also liven up the experience with a delicious dipping sauce. This one is especially great for spring, balancing the sweetness of fresh mango with a satisfying kick of chilli.
Crab & Herb Sandwiches
These little sandwiches make delicious finger food with some afternoon cocktails, or a very decadent light lunch. Save yourself the effort of picking out the crab yourself by purchasing pre-picked crab meat – just make sure it is Australian, as imported crab meat has usually been frozen and can therefore be watery.
Cocktail Abalone with Asian Dressing
If you’ve never tried Abalone before, this recipe is a fantastic way to do it. It has an interesting, firm texture that can take some getting used to, but is decidedly satisfying and delicious. The secret to this recipe is slicing the abalone as thinly as possible; chilling them well in the freezer before cutting firms them up and makes this easier.
Cold-smoked Ocean Trout & Flatbread Rolls
These flatbread rolls are a new take on smoked Salmon blinis, using the similar-tasting Ocean Trout, and turning them into satisfying little wraps. While Ocean Trout is just as delicious as Atlantic Salmon, you can also use smoked Salmon in this recipe for the same result. The lavash used for these tasty snacks is a flat, rectangular, Middle Eastern bread popular for making wraps, which is also sometimes called mountain bread.