Bring the ocean to your table with delicious, fresh shellfish salads.
Even though most of us are back to work, summer entertaining continues and it should be a cinch if we take advantage of all the gorgeously delicate shellfish to be enjoyed during these hot summer evenings.
Mussels, scallops, cockles, paua and oysters are all magnificent, as are tuatuas and pipis if you are lucky enough to have a nearby source or know where to dig your toes in.
There are so many delicious shellfish options. Scallops can be flash cooked on a searingly hot grill, then placed on top of a little vibrantly green and nutritious seaweed. Pair these ingredients with juicy caramelised slabs of eggplant and you have a complete meal.
Mussels can be just steamed to retain the succulence then roughly chopped into a salad with sweet leaves of fresh basil and a piquant cucumber pickle.
Fresh oysters topped with a melon, pear and pomegranate salsa is such a simple idea to entertain. Enjoy all with a chilled glass of wine or two.
Shellfish has to be as fresh as possible. I suggest you buy it to eat that day or keep chilled for the next. Scallops are not often available in the shell but ask the fishmonger and they may be able to be ordered. Simmering scallops in the shells with wine, cream and herbs on the barbie is simple, a tad retro and very delicious.