Dinner No 33 hosted by Scotty: October 2017

Despite living by the sea – I don’t eat enough fish – so I thought it would be fun to do a seafood themed evening.

To nibble – I embarked on some homemade taramasalata – which I thought was pretty rank so I was amazed when a few people thought the taste was ok, even though it was a bit runny !! An emergency nibble planned on the day to detract from the Tara shocker was going to be a crab, lime, chilli, coriander bite – until I couldn’t find any crab – so at 3pm that turned into a scallop, chorizo, beetroot and lime nibble instead – presentation needed some work but they were reasonably tasty.

Then to start – salmon sashimi. Never done this before but as long as the fish is good quality – it’s super easy. Making the soy and ginger jellies was fun as I’ve never used leaf gelatine before – again – amazing how easy that is.

Then lobster bisque. A bit time intensive, but once you get over the horror of killing the lobsters – all the effort was worth it. Would definitely repeat it, loved it.

Then – Harissa monkfish cous cous. Hmmmm I think this needed more harissa as it was a bit bland but then maybe the monkfish would have been over powered ? Not a repeat – didn’t really enhance the monkfish and was just ok.

Finally the apple roses. These look good, are easy to make and yummy. A definite do again for a dinner party. The only top tip I would give is that it can be hard to get the pastry cooked through without burning the top. The first batch I did at 190 for 40 mins and the apple caught at the top. The second batch I did at 180 for about 50 mins and the pastry was a bit undercooked in the middle and so I turned he oven up to finish then off and the apple caught! Needs a little finessing to get the apple to stay red skinned and beautiful.

Loved it though – a fun night and a few recipes to be repeated (not the taramasalta !)

  1. I love seafood!

    Except taramasalata – not sure if that is my brain rather than my taste buds – I can handle chicken eggs but not so keen on fish eggs!

    Anything with beetroot for me is an immediate winner and I thought these were super appetising without being too filling. A perfect nibble.

    The sashimi was fab – I would be so nervous about doing this but I guess you just have to have a good fishmonger and be prepared to shop on the day. I thought the jellies were so delicous and complemented the fish beautifully. It is also lovely to have something so light.

    The lobster bisque got podium place by some margin for me. I can’t even begin to describe how perfect it was. Total perfection. I know I will never make it myself so I am going to have to wait until Scotty makes it again!

    The cous cous was not too exciting. I think it was totally overshadowed by what came before it actually – for me cous cous needs PILES of stuff and flavours to be added to it because it doesn’t bring much to the party on it’s own. The harissa didn’t come through – I think monkfish being so meaty can take quite a lot of punch.

    The apple roses were adorable, perfect for a dinner party as they are so self contained and look so pretty – and I thought the ‘burnt’ bits added to the overall look! The pastry was a bit on the soggy side in the middle (didn’t stop me poloshing off someone elses as well as my own!!) which is tricky to get round, maybe thinner pastry? Or maybe put the apple slices in a super low oven to dry them out a bit to stop the moisture leaking into the pastry? I will deffo have a go at these sometime.

    I love how Scotty takes her inspiration from everywhere and is fearless in trying new things 🙂

  2. Thank you for a wonderful evening of food and conversation ……
    Had to skip beetroot starter due to braces argghhhh
    Sashimi was spot on and hard to get right …well done
    Lobster bisque was absolutley delicious
    The cous cous and monkfish was a little bland but following the strong flavours of the lobster bisque that was going to happen…..monkfish followed by lobster might have worked better for taste buds
    I don’t usually like puddings but apple rose tartlets were yummy and looked so pretty.
    Scottie I think you’re a superstar, thanks again Melanie xxx

  3. Lucy

    What an amazing evening! Seafood has always been one of my favourites so I was delighted to receive Scotty’s lovely invitation, all my expectations however were completely exceeded as amazing course after course kept arriving.

    The beetroot, chorizo and scallop canapé was definitely one of the stars of the night for me. It tasted delicious with the perfect amount of lime added to the beetroot to counter the strong flavours of the scallop and chorizo. A really different canapé which I will definitely be copying.

    The taramasalata, I agree with Scotty a bit too runny and for my taste a little too close to mayonnaise in texture. Maybe I am a philistine who just likes the synthetic pink stuff too much.

    The sashimi with the amazing jellies was perfection. I loved, loved the strong taste of ginger in the jelly so you didn’t need to add as much of the pickled ginger. The presentation was truly beautiful too I think we will all be placing our orders with “Something Fishy”.

    The bisque was my favourite….absolutely sublime. So impressed with cooking the whole recipe right from live lobster to bowl. I wondered if I would have cheated with a pre cooked one. So glad Scotty didn’t though as the flavours were brilliant and I don’t think they would have been quite as good if she hadn’t braved the boiling bit!

    The monkfish cous cous was delicious a great recipe for a family supper, monkfish was delicately cooked. I wonder if some stock in the cous cous would have helped it stand out a bit more.

    Apple rose tarts were so beautiful and tasted amazing. A great recipe find and useful to have a pudding that can be made pretty much totally in advance.

    Thank you so much for a great evening Scotty, definitely one to be remembered.

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