A tasty and hearty seafood and potato salad which would do well as an accompaniment or a main.
Ingredients (serves 6)
2 cloves garlic, bruised
2kg pot-ready black mussels (see note)
80ml (1/3 cup) extra virgin olive oil
1 red eschalot, very thinly sliced
Chopped segments of 2 lemons
1 wedge preserved lemon, flesh discarded, finely chopped
1 chilli, seeded, finely chopped
2 cups watercress sprigs
1/2 cup coriander leaves
300g crab meat, picked through
Butter-leaf lettuce, to serve
Place potatoes, a pinch of salt and garlic in a saucepan, cover with cold water and cook over medium heat until tender, then drain. Discard garlic. Cool potatoes slightly, then peel and chop.
Meanwhile, place mussels in a saucepan and steam, covered, over medium heat for 5 minutes, shaking the pan occasionally until mussels open. Cool slightly, then remove mussels from their shells.
Combine oil, eschalot, lemon segments, preserved lemon and chilli in a bowl and whisk to combine. Add warm potatoes and mussels and toss gently. Layer potato salad, watercress, coriander and crab meat into butter-leaf lettuce cups.
Pot-ready mussels have had their shells cleaned and have been bearded so no further preparation is needed. Kinkawooka Shellfish pot-ready mussels are sold in 1kg bags and are available from most fishmongers. Alternatively, use regular mussels, cleaned and bearded.
Cooking Time Preparation Time
15 minutes 10 minutes
Ingredients (serves 4)
1 tsp sesame oil
5cm ( 2 inch ) piece ginger, peeled, finely shredded
1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp Chinese five spice
6 green onions, trimmed, thinly sliced
1/2 cup (125ml) chicken stock
1/4 cup (60ml) shaoxing wine
2 tbs dark soy sauce
1 tbs brown sugar
2 kg black mussels, scrubbed, de-bearded
2 tsp peanut oil
2 bunches choy sum, trimmed
Steamed jasmine rice, to serve
Heat the oil in a wok over high heat. Add the ginger, garlic, five spice and half the green onions and stir-fry for 1 minute or until fragrant. Add the stock, wine, soy sauce and sugar and bring to the boil. Add the mussels and cook, covered, for 3-4 minutes (discard any unopened mussels). Transfer mixture to a large bowl.
Add the peanut oil to the wok over high heat. Add the choy sum and stir-fry for 2-3 minutes or until choy sum wilts.
Place the choy sum among shallow serving bowls. Top with mussels and pour over cooking liquid. Sprinkle with remaining green onions. Serve immediately with steamed jasmine rice.
For visual interest, use a variety of molluscs such as clams, mussels and scallops, or substitute shellfish with lightly sauteed tiger prawns.Preparation Time
• 8 oysters
• 1–2 shallots, peeled and chopped finely
• white balsamic vinegar
1 Mix the shallots and vinegar together. The vinegar should just cover the shallots.
2 Take a fresh oyster and flip it open with an oyster knife. Break it open at the hinge and work around the shell. If you haven’t got an oyster knife use a blunt knife. Discard the top shell
leaving the oyster meat and any juices in the base shell. Then, using a knife, ‘dis-attach’ the oyster from the shell, making sure you leave nothing behind. Leave the oyster in the shell as eating it from the shell is half the fun.
3 Take a teaspoon of the shallot and vinegar mix and put it onto the oyster.
4 Pour the oyster from the shell into your mouth, chew once and throw it down the hatch!
5 Oysters are best washed down with champagne.
EVER WONDERED ABOUT FOOD
An adult oyster can filter as much as 60 gallons of water per day.
Not all oysters taste the same! The size, shape, flavour and food value of oysters are severely affected by their habitat.
In November 1902, the British oyster trade was dealt a severe blow with lasting effects. In Southampton and Winchester, two mayoral banquets
were held at which oysters were served. A large number of the guests were poisoned and four died after the Winchester banquet. It is claimed that the oyster industry lost 75 per cent of its trade after these events.
Oysters are one of the most nutritionally well-balanced foods, containing protein, carbohydrates and lipids.
Oysters have long been valued as both an aphrodisiac and a hangover cure, but they are now considered unhealthy as they have high levels of cholesterol.
During Dickensian times (in the 1800s), oysters were cheap and plentiful, and were regarded as food for the poor.
Outbreaks of typhoid in Victorian times started from contaminated oysters.