lobster and crab — oh my: Summer living requires seafood - GulfToday

Lobster and crab — oh my: Summer living requires seafood

Food Sun

Creamy seafood rolls on buttered brioche. TNS

JeanMarie Brownson

Sun and seafood. The combination always boosts our souls. Little wonder we travel to water-rimmed places such as Florida to jumpstart our spirits. This spring, we plan to start our warm weather entertaining out on our deck with chilled drink and seafood-based dishes inspired by our travels.

Less rich, but equally delicious, seafood party fare includes crispy fish and crunchy slaw tostadas. Crisp corn tostadas, sold in plastic bags at the local tortilleria, are great for hand-held appetizers. You can assemble the tostadas at the last minute or let guests assemble their own.

Another option is to serve the sauteed fish and slaw tucked in a small tortilla or warmed pita pocket.

CREAMY SEAFOOD ROLLS ON BUTTERED BRIOCHE

Prep: 30 minutes

Cook: 10 minutes

Makes: 5 sandwiches, or 20 appetizer-size wedges

1 pound peeled, deveined, raw large shrimp, 20 to 25 to a pound

1/2 cup organic mayonnaise

4 small green onions, trimmed, very thinly sliced, about 1/2 cup

1 tablespoon minced fresh dill

1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried

1/2 teaspoon coarse (kosher) salt

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

12 ounces cooked langoustine tails (thawed and drained), or roughly chopped steamed lobster

1 can (about 6 ounces) lump crab meat, drained

10 slices (each 3/4 inch thick) French brioche bread (or challah, Pullman loaf or egg twist bread)

4 tablespoons butter, softened

Fresh dill for garnish

1. Fill a medium saucepan half full with water and heat to boil over high heat. Add shrimp, stir and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook, stirring once or twice, until shrimp are pink but not firm, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain. Let cool.

2. Mix mayonnaise, green onions, dill, thyme, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add cooled shrimp, langoustine tails and drained crab meat. Gently mix everything together.

3. Spread softened butter over one side of each slice of bread.

4. Heat a large nonstick griddle over medium heat until a drop of water sizzles furiously. Reduce heat under griddle to very low. Add 4 slices of the bread, buttered side up, leaving space between slices. Cook on low until bread starts to turn golden, about 1 minute. Flip bread so it is buttered side down and cook until golden, about 1 minute.

5. Top half of the bread slices with about 1 cup of the seafood mixture spreading it evenly over the bread. Flip another piece of bread on top with the buttered side up to make a sandwich. Let sit on the griddle another minute to crisp the bread to a beautiful brown. Then transfer to a cutting board. Repeat to make all sandwiches.

6. Serve sandwiches cut on the diagonal into 4 pieces. Secure with wooden picks if desired. Arrange on a platter and garnish with chopped fresh dill and dill sprigs. Serve.

Tribune News Service