For this recipe I used fresh crab claws which I boiled in salted water and then removed the meat, make sure you use white crab meat. If you can´t get hold of any crab you can replace the crab with shrimps. The spring onion and cucumber is almost completely hidden in the pictures under the cilantro but don´t forget them because they add much needed crunch to this dish.
Crab with cilantro & avocado
Peel and crush the avocado into a rough paste, chop some cilantro and add to the avocado and combine. Add fresh lime juice, salt and pepper. Season to taste. Dice the cucumber and slice some spring onion. Plate the avocado cream and put the crab meat on top together with some cucumber and spring onion. Garnish with fresh cilantro leafs.
This is probably the tastiest way I ever had calamari, simple, fresh and tasty. For this recipe I used frozen baby squid which is better since you want to slice them as thin as you can, taste wise there is no problem using larger calamaris but if you´ll find small, get them.
Calamari with cilantro, lime & spring onion
Slice the calamari as thin as you can, slice the spring onion. Heat olive oil in a pan on high heat and add the calamari, sear it for about thirty seconds constantly stirring. Add salt and pepper and then the spring onion. If it starts to dry out then add a little more olive oil. Finally squeeze in lime juice and some roughly chopped cilantro, serve immediately.
In Sweden soused herring is a big deal, served throughout the year but with it´s peak on midsummer, then usually served with freshly picked potatoes, sour cream and onion.
This is another version that also tastes great. If you can´t get a hold of soused herring than you can replace with other Scandinavian style herring, as long as it´s salty and pickled it will work fine, even if the taste is different. And if you´re feeling inspired you can try another of my herring tapas.
Soused herring with potatoes, egg and browned butter
potatoes (in Sweden the new harvest of potatoes is a big deal and a must if you´re Swedish, if not you can replace it with a good tasting, firm and small potato).
Scrub the potatoes clean and boil in salted water until done, boil the eggs until hard boiled, peel the eggs and chop them. Slice pieces of herring thin, slice the potatoes and arrange potatoes, egg and herring on top of each other. Slice the chives and put on top.
In a pan add butter and let it turn brown in a pan on medium heat. Stir the butter during the whole process to make sure it doesn´t burn on the bottom of the pan. When it starts to turn brown carefully smell it, it should have a nutty aroma to it, and is the reason it´s called Beurre Noisette in french which translates to Hazelnut butter. If you haven´t used this much before then get to it because it´s has an amazing flavor and can be used to all sorts of good stuff. Pour the butter over the plate and serve immediately. Good luck.
Serving frog legs could be a bit risky so make sure your guest are willing to feast on a few frogs before you get started. I bought these frog legs frozen so they require a bit of trimming. But they taste great and is not an acquired taste as a lot of other unusual food tend to be.
Deep fried frog legs with herb cream
panko (Asian bread crumbs, could be replaced for regular bread crumbs)
oil for deep frying
Cut away each frog leg from the spine of the frog which is usually still on if you´re got frozen frog legs. Cut away the top of the leg and trim away the meat that sits on the lower piece of the leg. This should leave a clean bone with the thick piece of meat left on. Trim the rest of the legs, the small pieces that gets trimmed of can also be fried but I didn´t for this dish.
Dip the legs in wheat flour and season with salt and pepper, whisk the egg and then dip the legs in the egg and finally in the panko bread, make sure the meat is completely covered with panko.
Deep fry the legs in a fryer or a pan with oil until golden, check that the legs are cooked through.
mixed fresh herbs, for example parsley, chives, dill, spinach
Mix the herbs with some olive oil and the garlic into a thick herb paste, combine with half creme fraiche and half mayonnaise, season with salt and pepper. Good luck.
This is a great way to enjoy both goat cheese and strawberries, the acidity from the vinegar make the taste complete. Use sweet fully ripened strawberries, but if they are not sweet enough you can ad just a touch of honey or sugar to the vinegar.
Strawberries with balsamic vinegar & goat cheese
goat cheese, chèvre
Cut the strawberries in half och quarters, add some balsamic vinegar and carefully combine. Let the strawberries marinate for half an hour. Cut the cheese in small bite size pieces. Add a piece of strawberry for each piece of cheese, add some freshly ground black pepper, serve.
Not much to it, if you can´t find raw crab claws then it´s fine to use cooked if you have a good place to buy shellfish, and if you´re feeling extra lazy go ahead and buy the aioli as well. If not the follow the recipe below.
Crab claws with aioli & salt
raw crab claws
People like to put beer, sugar and all sorts of things in the water when they cook shellfish, I prefer salt, water and dill. Bring water to the boil, salt it and if you´re using dill then add it. Taste the water, it should have about the same saltiness as sea water. When the water is boiling add the claws and bring the water to boil again. Then remove from heat and let cool in the water. You can serve them warm or cold.
Now time for aioli, you´ll need
neutral oil for example grape seed or rapeseed oil
I use half a teaspoon of mustard and a small clove of garlic for each egg yolk but adjust according to taste. Whisk the egg yolks with the mustard, vinegar and crushed garlic, add some salt and pepper right away. Add the oil slowly and whisk during the whole process, stop adding oil when the aioli is thick enough. Season with mustard, garlic, vinegar, salt and pepper according to taste. Good luck!
The classic Spanish Gazpacho soup is a must for me at least once a week throughout the summer, this version is made using only green vegetables except for the tomatoes which are yellow. The flavor gets a bit different but equally good and fresh.
Green gazpacho with cream cheese crostini
yellow or green tomatoes
white wine vinegar
salt, black pepper
Cut all vegetables into pieces, add a few pieces of white bread and splash over some vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. Let sit out for half an hour to let the vegetables marinate.
Blend the vegetables into an soup, season with vinegar, oil, salt and pepper. Cut bread into thin slices and toast, spread on some cream cheese. Serve the soup ice cold.
This is a great tapas for any summer occasion, very easy to do and you´ll be surprised of how many who haven´t tried it. If you´re can get a hold of fresh peas that´s great but frozen peas are one of the true heroes of any freezer and works just as good. Fresh mint is however a must.
Smashed peas with mint on toast
Bring water to boil with some salt, when boiling add the peas and simmer for about a minute, discard the water, add a knob of butter and some olive oil and blend the peas with a few leafs of mint for a couple of seconds, you don´t want the peas to be to finely blended. A few whole peas is fine and makes the texture more interesting. Season the puré with salt and pepper.
Toast or grill the bread and put a spoonful of peas on top with some extra pieces of mint and salt.