Shellfish is delicious all year round, but there’s something about eating it in the summer that makes it that little bit more special (although eating it in winter and pretending it’s summer could also work, if you’ve had enough of cold weather and short days!)
Here are three of my favourite shellfish recipes that I enjoy all year round.
Mussels in a White Wine Sauce (Serves 2 mains or 4 appetisers)
For this recipe, you will need:
2lb of clean mussels
Half a cup of white wine (dry)
2 knobs of butter
0.25lb of finely diced shallots
One tablespoon of finely diced garlic
1 or 2 teaspoons of flour
0.25 cup of diced parsley
First, you’ll need to make sure that your mussels are clean. Put the mussels in a colander before placing under running water and scrubbing away any dirt and pulling away any beards that still remain.
To begin cooking, pour half a cup of the white wine into a pot and place on a high heat. Drop the mussels into the pot and cover. Bring the wine to the boil and leave on a high heat for 5-8 minutes, until all the mussels are open wide. At this point, discard any mussels that won’t open.
Take the mussels from the pot and place them into a bowl while keeping the wine to pour into a jug and leave to settle. This will let you separate any leftover grit left in the pan.
Now you can add the two knobs of butter to a separate pan and add the shallots. Once they turn clear, add the garlic and a teaspoon or two of flour for thickness. Slowly add the wine that was placed aside from earlier and finish by adding the diced parley to the sauce.
Serve with some rustic bread rolls with salted butter to dip into the sauce. This dish would work really well on its own as a main or as a great little appetiser for more servings.
Spaghetti with crab, tomato and basil
For this recipe you’ll need:
1.5 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
2 diced garlic cloves
Half a teaspoon of crushed chilli flakes
250g of cherry tomatoes
250g of thin spaghetti
300g of fresh white crab meat
200g of prawns
1 handful of roughly chopped basil
Salt and pepper for seasoning
Begin by boiling some pasta to the instructions on the packet.
Now you can start with the rest of the meal by heating the extra virgin olive oil in a large frying pan. When it’s nice and hot, add the garlic and chilli flakes to the pan for a couple of minutes before adding the cherry tomatoes for a further three. Add the prawns to cook for around 3-4 minutes until they’re nice and pink.
Remove the pan from the heat and then add the crab meat to warm through before finishing with some seasoning. Mix the pasta in with the sauce and finish with chopped basil on top. Add some rustic garlic bread as a side.
Lobster Salad (Serves 4)
For this dish you’ll need:
4 small/medium sized lobsters
12 new potatoes
4 spring onions, finely chopped
2 tbsp chopped coriander
1 lemon, halved
mixed baby salad leaves
If you are purchasing live lobster, you’ll need to ask the fishmonger to kill the lobster humanely.
Place the lobster in a boiling pot for 5 minutes along with some seasoning to cook. Once the lobster has cooled enough to handle, twist off the head and the claws. Crack open the claws and remove the pieces of meat inside. To remove the tail meat, cut up the centre of the inside shell with scissors before peeling back the rest of the shell and taking out the meat.
Now you can boil the potatoes in salted water until they are cooked and lightly crush with a fork when they are done. Fry your spring onions in olive oil for a couple of minutes before adding the potatoes, coriander and seasoning to the pan.
Add the all of the claw meat to the pan before squeezing in some lemon juice. Separate into four servings before piling in the centre of four dishes. Add the lobster tail meat on top along with some melted butter and cracked black pepper to finish.