One of the many things that both visitors and locals love about Cornwall is our abundant and unrivalled variety of seafood. From scallops to seabass, mussels to mullet, all fresh from the boat, we just can’t get enough, and Head Chef at Una St Ives, Glenn Gatland loves working with the fruits of the Atlantic Ocean. “A common misconception is that all fish and seafood is fiddly and difficult to cook and prepare and many people are not that adventurous when it comes to making seafood dishes at home. It’s true that some ingredients require experience and skill to work with, but you would be surprised at how easily you can whip up a high-quality meal or snack to impress your family and friends, as long as the ingredients are as fresh as possible”
Cooking a piece of fresh monkfish, or a scallop, to perfection may take a little practice to get right, but there are many little recipes using seafood that are super quick and simple. One such dish that is dead easy to create, and perfect for taking to a picnic or barbecue is ‘Potted Cornish crab’. Visually pleasing and utterly delicious, this one will make you feel like you’re sunbathing on Porthmeor beach on a summer’s day, no matter where you are.
Potted Cornish crab (makes 6 small pots)
- 165g picked, white crabmeat (the freshest you can buy)
- 2 tbsp mayonnaise
- 1 shallot, peeled & finely chopped
- small handful chives, chopped
- ½ orange, zested
- Pinch of Cornish sea salt
The paprika & garden chive butter
- 60g salted butter
- ¼ tsp smoked paprika
- Small hand full of chives
- Tip the crabmeat into a bowl and mix with the mayonnaise, shallot, chives, orange zest and some seasoning. Spoon the mixture into a shallow serving dish. Smooth the top over, then pop in the fridge to chill.
- Gently melt the butter and smoked paprika together. Leave the butter to cool a little, but don’t let it solidify. Carefully pour the clear butter fat over the crab, leaving the milky butter residue still in the saucepan. Sprinkle the chopped chives on top of the crab and butter pots. Return to the fridge for 20-25 mins or up to a day to firm the butter up. Serve with some crusty bread.
Another unbelievably simple side dish that you’ll find in many restaurants and dinner parties and tastes incredible is a smoked mackerel pâté. There are many different recipes for this ever-popular treat, but this one is Glenn’s favourite and is packed full of flavour (yet made in minutes!)
Smoked mackerel pâté (makes 6 portions)
- 300g smoked mackerel, from sustainable sources
- 300g soft salted butter
- 2 tbsp creamed horseradish
- Ground black pepper
- 1\2 zest and juice of a lemon
- Place all the ingredients into a food processor.
- Blend until smooth.
- Check for seasoning.
- Spoon mix into small dishes or ramekins.
- Best served with toasted crusty bread. Enjoy!
If you would rather sit back and let us do all the work, why not book yourself a table at the award-winning Una Kitchen and let Glenn and his team prepare you a delicious three-course feast that you won’t forget!