Sunday 25 February 2018

Grill seeker

Use the BBQ to create delicious salads and dishes with a twist

Panko parmesan scallops with grilled asparagus
Panko parmesan scallops with grilled asparagus
Tremaine's west coast crayfrish with curried citrus butter
Curried quinoa and roasted butternut squash
Rozanne Stevens

Rozanne Stevens

Panko Parmesan Scallops with Grilled Asparagus

Serves four as a main dish.

Moreish asian beek skewers
Moreish asian beek skewers


100g panko breadcrumbs

50g Parmesan cheese, grated

Zest of 1 lemon

4-5 tbsps olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

20 large scallops For the grilled asparagus 2 bunches asparagus

Olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Extra-virgin olive oil

Parmesan shavings

Lemon wedges


Mix together the panko breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, lemon zest and olive oil. Season well with salt and pepper.

Press the scallops firmly into the breadcrumb mixture and coat well. Place on a wire rack and chill in the fridge for at least 20 minutes to help set the breadcrumbs.

On a hot barbecue grill or hotplate, cook the scallops on one side for two to three minutes, until golden. Turn and brown the other side.

Do not overcook, as scallops cook very quickly.

Lightly coat the asparagus with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill until nicely charred. Dress with a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil, some Parmesan shavings and lemon wedges on the side. Serve the asparagus hot with the golden scallops.

Tips: Parmesan is an indispensable Italian ingredient. You can freeze well-wrapped wedges of Parmesan so that you always have it to hand.

Panko breadcrumbs are Japanese breadcrumbs made with rice flakes, which give the crispiest, crunchiest breadcrumb coating.

Thai Rice Salad With Spiced Pineapple

Serves six as a side salad.


200g/1 cup jasmine or basmati rice, cooked and allowed to cool

½ fresh pineapple, cut into long, chunky pieces

Juice of 1 lime

1 tsp chilli flakes

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp sea salt

Large bunch of fresh coriander, roughly chopped

2 tbsps desiccated coconut, lightly toasted For the dressing 2 fresh red chillies, sliced

1 thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger, grated

4 tbsps rice-wine vinegar

1 tbsp caster sugar


Cook the rice according to the instructions below and allow to cool. Mix all the dressing ingredients together and allow to infuse.

Put the pineapple, lime juice, spices and salt in a bowl. Allow to infuse for 10 minutes.

Grill the pineapple on a medium-hot barbecue for eight to 10 minutes, until charred and softened. Once the pineapple is grilled, cut it into smaller dice and toss through the rice. Garnish with coriander and desiccated coconut. Just before serving, pour the dressing over the salad.

Tip: Jasmine rice is native to Thailand and is a different species to basmati rice. It has a moist and sticky texture, rather than the fluffy, separate grains of basmati.

To cook, combine one part well-rinsed rice with two parts water in a pot with a pinch of salt. Bring to the boil and boil for five minutes. Switch off the hob, clamp on a tight-fitting lid and leave covered for 30 minutes, then fluff up with a fork.

Moreish Asian Beef Skewers

Serves six.


500g beef fillet or sirloin, diced into large pieces

4 tbsps flour seasoned with salt and pepper

3 spring onions, sliced

1 red chilli, sliced

Lemon wedges, to serve

Toasted sesame oil, to serve Marinade paste 2 cloves garlic, sliced

1 stick lemongrass, white part only, grated with a Microplane grater

1 spring onion, sliced

1 red chilli, sliced

1 thumb-sized piece of fresh ginger, grated

100ml plum sauce

2 tbsps soy sauce

1 tbsp sunflower oil


Soak 12 bamboo skewers in cold water for one hour. Pulse together all the marinade paste ingredients in a blender.

Coat the diced beef well in the seasoned flour, then pat on half of the marinade paste. Thread the beef on to the skewers and grill on a hot barbecue for three minutes on each side. This will cook the meat to medium rare. If you prefer your beef well cooked, move the skewers to a medium-hot part of the grill and cook further.

Serve the skewers garnished with the sliced spring onions, red chilli and lemon wedges and a few drops of toasted sesame oil. Serve the rest of the marinade on the side as a dipping sauce.

Tip: Plum sauce is a thick sweet-and-sour sauce made from plums and other soft stone fruit. You can make your own or use a shop-bought one as a dipping sauce for spring rolls, dumplings and other nibbles.

Curried Quinoa and Roasted Butternut Squash

Serves four.


2 red onions, peeled and sliced into wedges

1 butternut squash, peeled and diced

2 tbsps olive oil

1 tsp fennel seeds

1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

350g/2 cups quinoa

3 tsps medium curry powder

1 tsp garam masala

1 litre/4 cups low-salt chicken or vegetable stock

1 x 400g tin chickpeas, rinsed and drained

200g baby spinach leaves

Juice of 1 lemon


Coat the onions and butternut squash with the olive oil, fennel seeds and nutmeg and season with salt and pepper. Grill on a medium-hot barbecue for about 20 minutes, until charred and softened.

Place the quinoa, curry powder, garam masala and stock in a pot and bring to the boil. Add the rinsed chickpeas and reduce to a simmer for 15 minutes, until the quinoa is light and fluffy and all the stock has been absorbed. Season with black pepper.

Stir in the spinach by the handful until it wilts down. Plate up the quinoa with the butternut squash and red onions piled on top. Squeeze over lemon juice to taste.

Tip: Quinoa is the fruit of a plant native to Bolivia, but it looks and cooks like a grain. It's gluten-free and a perfect protein. A great source of fibre, quinoa is very easy to cook and goes well with most cuisines. It has a lovely texture, a slight nutty taste and it absorbs flavours and sauces well. Use as a base for satisfying salads.

Tremaine's West Coast Crayfish With Curried Citrus Butter

Serves four as a side dish.


4 crayfish or lobster

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Sunflower oil

4 lemons, cut into wedges For the curried citrus butter 2 tsps curry powder

1 tsp English mustard powder

Juice of ½ lemon

225g butter, softened

2 cloves garlic, crushed

Coarse sea salt and freshly ground black pepper For the salad 10 radishes, sliced

3 spring onions, chopped

2 heads of baby Cos lettuce, leaves separated and washed

2 avocados, sliced

1 papaya, sliced

2 tbsps chopped fresh coriander or micro salad leaves, to garnish For the salad dressing 50ml/¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

50ml/¼ cup sunflower oil

2 tbsps dry white wine

2 tbsps lemon juice

1 tsp lemon zest

1 tsp Dijon mustard

½ tsp caster sugar

Salt and freshly ground black pepper


To make the butter, dissolve the curry powder and mustard powder in the lemon juice. Add the spice mixture to the softened butter along with the crushed garlic and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Scoop the butter on to a sheet of parchment paper. Shape into a log and wrap up in the paper like a Christmas cracker, tying the ends with string. Place in the fridge or even the freezer to slice off discs whenever needed.

Toss all the salad ingredients together, except the coriander or micro salad.

Put all the salad dressing ingredients in a jam jar with a lid and give it a good shake. Dress the salad just before serving.

To cook the crayfish, place each crayfish on a board, belly down, tail outstretched. Rest a large, very sharp knife down the length of the back from the small horn between the eyes. Press down or hit the knife with a mallet to split the shell neatly, then cut through the tail. Scrape out and discard the entrails. Rinse the crayfish and pat them dry.

Season the crayfish with salt and pepper and brush with some melted curried citrus butter. Place the crayfish flesh-side down on a medium-hot grill just long enough to lightly brown the meat. Lightly oil the lemon wedges and grill until they're just charred.

Turn the fish, baste liberally with melted curried citrus butter and cook for a further 15-20 minutes, until the flesh is opaque and pulls away easily from the shell.

Serve the crayfish with curried citrus butter, charred lemon wedges and dressed salad garnished with coriander or micro salad leaves.

Tip: English mustard powder is a seasoning and cooking condiment made from ground mustard seeds, turmeric and flour. It has a strong, sharp taste that is pungent rather than hot. You can also buy it ready prepared as a paste in a jar. I use English mustard to flavour salad dressings, marinades, basting sauces and any time a little oomph is required.

Irish Independent

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