Make it a Summer to Remember with these BBQ Seafood Ideas

Come summer there’s nothing better than fresh seafood prepared on the barbecue. Delight your friends and family with these delicious recipes and handy tips for just about any occasion. Become the ultimate host this summer and make every barbecue a moment to remember.

Go Moroccan after a morning surf

While Australia is recognised the world over for our surf inspired seafood cuisine, there's still much we can learn from cultures around the world. The glittering beaches of Morocco are one place where you'll find barbecues just beyond the beach dunes and selections of mouthwatering seafood pulled straight from the ocean. Check out these quick fire recipes for your next BBQ.

Sardine and chargrilled capsicum salad

Chuck both the sardines and sliced red capsicum onto the grill and serve on a bed of parsley leaves. Drizzle with olive oil and add a sultana dressing for that true burst of flavour.

Sultana dressing
  • 40g sultanas
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ preserved lemon. Discard pulp, rinse rind
  • Sea salt and black pepper to season.

Fish kebabs on the BBQ

For this Moroccan delight you’ll need:
 
  • 1kg skinless white fish fillets, boneless.
  • 3 tomatoes cut into 6 wedges each
  • 6 bay leaves
  • 3 lemons cut into thin wedges
  • Oil oil
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon cumin, ground

Staying true to the BBQ, preparation is easy, just:

1.    Skewer fish, tomato, bay leaves and lemon
2.    Brush with oil
3.    Cool for about 7 minutes on the BBQ, turning once
4.    Sprinkle with salt and cumin before serving

Charred calamari after hours

The backyard BBQ chef tends to takes it too easy on this summertime favourite. The truth is calamari can take a good charring, which makes it perfect for a low maintenance meal after hours. Let it go a little longer on the BBQ for that smoky flavour while you focus on guests and conversation.

Drunken giant octopus

Giant octopus is a great centrepiece for the summertime BBQ. But before throwing this tentacled tantalizer on the grill try precooking on the hotplate by simmering in wine, herbs and a splash of olive oil. Once it’s tender, let it cool off and clean off the skin. Marinate for a bit longer in olive oil then finish off on the barbecue. You can do all the precooking in advance which is great for when you're entertaining.

The whole fish and nothing but

For the ultimate statement nothing comes close to a whole barbecued snapper. Perfect for when you want to impress, or when you're on the go and don't have the time or resources to fuss about with too much meal prep. Bream and yellowtail snapper are two popular fish that are great to cook whole. Simple stuff with fresh herbs, slice up some capsicum rings and asparagus for colour on the grill and serve with wedges of lemon and a bottle of chilled white.

Banana leaf Bali style

Infuse your next weekend event with this barbecue seafood hack courtesy of the Pacific Islands. Keep delicate cuts of fish fillet from breaking apart and sticking to the grill by wrapping them in banana leaf. Not only does this versatile plant provide some much needed protection from the coals, it also keeps your fish from drying out and infuses the flesh with a sweet smokiness that lifts just about any dish. You can also wrap other ingredients in with the fish like slices of citrus, fruits and veggies.

If you're not sure where to find banana leaf, try Strand Fresh Fruit or your local Asian Grocery Store. If you can't source fresh ones frozen will do. Be sure to wash them with running water before use.

Say olè with aioli

Impress the whole gang with lashings of homemade aioli to accompany buffet of barbecue seafood. This handy recipe is easy to whip up in a flash, thanks to the BBQ experts at Weber. All you need is:

    2 egg yolks
    A tablespoon of lemon juice
    ½ teaspoon sugar
    1 cup of vegetable oil
    1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
    ½ teaspoon salt (flaked)

Whipping it up won't take long either. In fact, you can make it just prior to putting the seafood is on the BBQ. Simply:
 
  1. Whisk the egg yolks, salt flakes, and mustard in a bowl
  2. Add vegetable oil gradually as you whisk
  3. The mixture should thicken over time. Continue to whisk
  4. Add lemon juice and sugar to taste

The best thing about this aioli is that it tastes great with just about any kind of seafood. Serve with squid, prawns, and fresh or crumbed fish fillets.

Marinades: Keep it simple

Seafood is naturally tasty, so avoid overdoing it with sauces and dressings. Keep it simple with marinades, experiment with ingredients like:
 
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Fresh Thyme
  • Parsley
  • Ginger
  • Coriander
  • Lemongrass
  • Lemon zest
  • Fennel
  • Salt

With fish, the key is to manage the acidity and salt of the marinade, as it can affect the texture of the flesh after a few hours.

Use the freshest of the fresh

All the recipes in the world will only get you so far if you’re not using the freshest catch. The best chefs will tell you that the fresher the better when it comes to succulent seafood flavours. Next time you’re planning a BBQ stop by the Strand Coolangatta for market fresh fish and seafood.

Before you BBQ, meet with friends for a drink and chat at the Beach Bar. And if you can’t be bothered cooking yourself, why not meet up at the restaurant at Coolangatta Hotel for the perfect selection of seafood dishes and breezy summertime vibes only the Cooly can offer.
15 / 01 / 2018