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Assembling

Especially in the warmer months, ‘cooking dinner’ can be as easy as assembling some great ingredients.

While purists prefer their Oysters freshly shucked with no adornment except perhaps a squeeze of lemon juice, others prefer to dress them up with a zingy dressing. Try some of these combinations:

  • Finely chopped golden shallots with a little red wine vinegar.
  • Finely grated ginger and finely chopped coriander leaves with equal parts lime juice and fish sauce and enough sugar to sweeten slightly.
  • 2 parts mirin with 1 part Japanese soy sauce and a little shredded pickled ginger.
  • Peeled, seeded and finely diced ripe tomatoes, finely diced golden shallots, chopped chervil, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper.

Already cooked seafood is the perfect base for a quick lunch or dinner:

  • Toss hot-smoked Trout with boiled potatoes, watercress and a mayonnaise dressing for a warm salad.
  • Combine cooked, peeled Prawns, Rocklobster or Bug meat with shredded iceberg lettuce for a classic, or modern, seafood cocktail (see recipe on right)
  • Layer cold-smoked Atlantic Salmon with slices of avocado and red onion on toasted wholemeal bread, top with extra virgin olive oil, a squeeze of lemon juice, salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper for a great open sandwich.
  • Mix cooked Crabmeat (Abacus brand from Western Australia is great if you don’t want to pick your own) through freshly cooked pasta with olive oil, parsley, a little chopped chilli and preserved lemon.

Seafood platters are a real crowd pleaser during the summer months:

  • Serve Oysters on a bed of crushed ice, rock salt or seaweed with lemon wedges on the side.
  • Peel Prawns and arrange them around a bowl containing one of the dipping sauces below; or leave them unpeeled for a more impressive display.
  • Mix freshly grated horseradish, or horseradish cream, into crème fraîche, smear onto slices of cold-smoked Salmon top with a couple of chives, roll up and stack on a platter.
  • Mound segmented cooked Crabs, Bugs or Rocklobsters onto a platter, garnish with wedges of lime and sprigs of herbs such as dill and chervil.
  • Buy sliced sashimi Tuna, Salmon or Kingfish and arrange on a platter with a small bowl of soy sauce, some pickled ginger and a mound of wasabi paste.

Dipping sauces are a great way to quickly dress up ready-cooked seafood; the combinations are endless but try these for a start:

  • Whole-egg mayonnaise mixed with wasabi paste or powder.
  • Ripe mango pureed with a dash of Tabasco sauce and good squeeze of lime juice.
  • A bunch of parsley pureed with a little garlic, capers and anchovies and enough olive oil to form a dipping consistency.
  • Thick natural yoghurt mixed with lime juice and zest.
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