LIFE OF THE PARTY
Gourmet Traveller|November 2021
Make seafood the star of your next celebration with these elegant party bites that will impress any guest.
DOMINIC SMITH

Crab and potato rosti with salmon roe

SERVES 6-8 // PREP TIME 30 MINS // COOK 1 HR (PLUS SETTING)

Spring and summer are the seasons for crabs. Whether you use blue swimmer or mud crabs, neither will disappoint with their sweet, delicate flesh.

2 tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp Dijon mustard

60 ml (¼ cup) lemon-infused extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling

500 gm cooked blue swimmer or mud crab meat (see note)

100 gm salmon roe Baby red vein sorrel, to garnish

POTATO ROSTI

1.25 kg Desiree potatoes

2 tbsp each finely chopped thyme leaves and chives

2 tbsp plain flour

1 egg, lightly beaten

Grapeseed oil, for shallow-frying

1 Preheat oven to 160°C. Grease and line base and sides of a 20cm x 30cm x 3cm-deep tin with baking paper. For potato rosti, coarsely grate potato and place in a large clean tea towel and squeeze out as much water as possible. Transfer potato to a large bowl and add herbs, flour and egg. Season to taste and stir to combine. Place mixture in prepared tin, and, using an offset spatula or metal spoon, press evenly and firmly into the tin. Bake until cooked through but without colour (40 minutes). Refrigerate to cool (1 hour).

2 Meanwhile, whisk lemon juice, mustard and oil together in a bowl.

3 Remove rosti from pan and trim edges straight. Cut potato rosti into four lengthways, then cut each length into 7 almost-square pieces (3.5cm x 4.5cm). Makes 28. Heat a frying pan filled with 2cm oil over high heat to 180°C. Shallow fry rosti, in batches, turning occasionally until deep golden (2-3 minutes.) Drain on paper towel and keep warm.

4 To serve, add crab meat to lemon dressing, season to taste and toss to combine. Place rostis on a large platter, top with dressed crab meat, roe and red vein sorrel leaves.

Note Potato rosti can be prepared a day ahead. If blue swimmer or mud crab meat is unavailable, substitute spanner crab meat, prawns or lobster.

King prawns with preserved lemon and herb butter

SERVES 6-8 // PREP TIME 30 MINS // COOK 10 MINS

Jumbo king prawns are perfect for summer celebrations and require little in the way of embellishment.

250 gm lightly salted butter, at room temperature, chopped

5 garlic cloves, crushed

2 tbsp finely chopped preserved lemon

1 tbsp each finely chopped flat-leaf parsley and dill

2 tsp smoked paprika Finely grated rind of 1 lemon

20 extra-large green king prawns, peeled, deveined, heads intact Finger lime pearls and parsley, to serve

1 To make butter, place butter in the bowl of an electric stand mixer and whisk on high speed until pale and fluffy (3-4 minutes). Reduce speed to low, add garlic, preserved lemon, herbs, paprika and zest and mix until just combined and season to taste. Set aside at room temperature until ready to use.

2 Preheat a lightly greased barbecue or char-grill pan to high heat. Thread prawns onto metal skewers through the centre lengthways, then brush lightly with lemon and herb butter. When barbecue is very hot, grill prawns, in batches if necessary, turning and basting occasionally with butter until cooked (5-6 minutes).

3 To serve, arrange prawns on a large platter and spoon over lemon and herb butter. Scatter with finger lime pearls and parsley.

Note Lemon and herb butter can be made ahead. Bring to room temperature or heat gently in a small saucepan before using, if refrigerated.

Oysters two ways

SERVES 6-8 // PREP TIME 30 MINS // COOK 5 MINS (PLUS CHILLING, COOLING)

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