Treating a loved one to a home-cooked meal is a great way to make them feel special. Of course, you don’t have to wait for Valentine’s day! Here are some recipes that would be perfect for when you feel like cooking something special for someone – whether that’s for an anniversary, Valentine’s day or just when you fancy it!
Seared Scallops, Prawns & Balsamic Strawberries
You may be thinking that pairing scallops and strawberries is an odd idea but don’t judge until you try it! The sweet flavours of the dish are well-balanced by the rocket – but if you’re not a fan of rocket use baby spinach instead. To achieve perfectly seared scallops, make sure to check our cooking guide.
Seared Scallops & Prawns with Balsamic Strawberries
In a bowl, stir together the vinegar and sugar until the sugar is dissolved. Fold in the strawberries, cover, and chill for at least one hour. Remove from the fridge when you're ready to start cooking.
Heat the extra virgin olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute the shallots until softened, then add the leaves and turn until well mixed. Cook just a minute or two until all the leaves have wilted but are still fully green. Remove greens to a strainer and keep warm.
Dry the scallops and prawns well and sprinkle with the coarse salt. Heat a frying pan over medium-high heat until quite hot. Add the grapeseed or light olive oil, let the oil heat a moment, then carefully add the scallops and prawns.
Let the prawns sear for about 1 minute per side until just opaque. Remove and keep warm. Don't move the scallops until you can see a brown edge forming around the bottom (about 2 to 2½ minutes.) Carefully lift one scallop - if the surface has a nice caramelized colour, turn them over.
Cook for just another minute until the scallops are springy but not quite firm. Remove the scallops and keep warm.
Wipe out the pan, then add the strawberries and vinegar. Remove the strawberries after they are heated through (about 30 seconds) and let the balsamic cook down briefly until thickened to a syrupy consistency.
To serve, place the greens on a plate, top with the scallops, prawns, and strawberries, then drizzle the balsamic reduction over the scallops and prawns.
Brown Butter Sole with Peas & Mussels
If you’re a fan of classic flavours, try this lemon sole and mussels dish! Perfect if you’re looking for something easy to make that looks elegant enough for a special occasion and – above all – tastes delicious!
Heat the oil and butter in a deep frying pan until foaming. Add the fish fillets and cook for 3-4 mins. Carefully turn over and baste with the butter, which should be nut-brown.
Increase the heat and add the peas, mussels, cider, lemon juice and some seasoning. Cover with a lid and cook for another 3-4 mins until the mussels have opened – discard any that remain closed.
Scatter with pea shoots and bring the pan to the table with the lemon wedges on the side.
Tikka Salmon & Jewelled Rice
If you like spicy food, try this super flavoursome salmon dish! The yogurt, pomegranate & apricot brings some sweetness to the dish, so feel free to change the recipe to balance sweetness and spiciness depending on your own preference!
Combine 1 tbsp of the curry paste with 2 tbsp yogurt. Season the salmon and smear the yogurt paste all over the fillets, then set aside.
Heat the oil in a large pan (with a lid) and add the onion. Boil the kettle. Cook the onion for 5 mins to soften, and stir in the remaining curry paste then cook for 1 min more. Add the turmeric, apricots and rice, season well and give everything a good stir. Pour in 800ml water from the kettle. Bring to a boil, and simmer for 15 mins. Cover with a lid, lower the heat to a gentle simmer and cook for 15 mins more.
Uncover the rice and give it a good stir. Put the salmon fillets on top of the rice and re-cover the pan. Turn the heat to its lowest setting and leave undisturbed for 15-20 mins more until the salmon and rice are perfectly cooked. Scatter over the pomegranate seeds and coriander, and serve with the yogurt.
Fancy trying extra special and treat your loved one to luxurious lobster? Lobster meat is absolutely delicious, firm, meaty and has a delicate sweet taste. It’s an incredible experience that your loved one will remember! To help you out, we’ve got full cooking and preparation guides for live lobster.
Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil over medium-high heat. When the water is at a rolling boil, drop in the lobster tails. Boil until the shells are bright red and the lobster meat is cooked through, 7 to 9 minutes (add 3 to 4 more minutes for large tails). Drain the tails, and then remove and discard the shells, reserving the meat. If you're using fresh live lobster, check out our cooking and preparation guides.
Rinse the pot and return it to the stove. Add 1 tablespoon of the butter and melt over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until translucent, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, 1 minute more.
Add the rice and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the lemon zest and juice and bring to a simmer.
Add the broth ½ cup at a time, bringing the mixture to a simmer and stirring constantly as the broth is absorbed. When the broth is nearly absorbed, add another ½ cup of broth and repeat. Continue until all the broth has been added and absorbed.
In a medium pan, heat 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium heat. Add the thyme and cook until the butter is very fragrant, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the lobster tails and cook, tossing occasionally, until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes more.
Remove the risotto pot from the heat. Stir in the final 1 tablespoon butter and the Parmesan, and then season with salt and pepper.
Divide the risotto between two plates and then top each portion with two small (or one large) lobster tail and 1 to 2 teaspoons of the thyme butter. Serve immediately.
A traditional Dublin Coddle uses sausage and bacon but this version is full of tasty seafood. You can choose any fish and seafood you like, it’s really up to your personal preference! You can serve it with rice or potatoes on the side.
Add scallions, carrots and celery and simmer for 20 minutes.
Add fish/seafood of your choice and simmer for another five minutes.
Taste and season if necessary.
Serve in deep plates or bowls, with generous sprinklings of fennel or parsley.
Irish Fish Cakes & Tartar Sauce
These fish cakes are great made with fresh fish but they also are good to make if you have leftover fish to use! You can play around with the ratio of fish and potatoes, depending on how you prefer your fish cakes!
Peel and chop the potatoes into large chunks. Put them in a saucepan, cover with cold water, add 2 teaspoons of salt, and bring to a boil. Cook until the potatoes are very soft.
Put the cod in a shallow saute pan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, and then cover, turn off the heat, and let the fish poach for about 10-15 minutes. Drain.
Drain the potatoes and put them into a large mixing bowl. Use the back of a fork to mash them, leaving a little bit of texture.
Add the ketchup, parsley, lemon juice, beaten eggs, and salt and pepper. Stir briefly to combine, and then add the fish, breaking it apart with your fingers as you add it. I like the fish to remain fairly chunky, so don't break it apart too much. Fold the fish into the mixture until everything is evenly incorporated. It will be fairly wet.
I use a ⅓ cup measure to scoop out the mixture and form into patties. Flour your hands if necessary.
Roll each patty in the Ritz cracker crumbs, to coat all surfaces and set on a platter. You can cover and refrigerate the cakes at this point for later cooking if you like.
Coat the bottom of a skillet with vegetable oil and heat over medium heat until hot. Fry the cakes for about 5 minutes on each side until golden, crispy, and hot throughout. Note: the cakes will be very delicate, move and flip them with extra care.
Serve immediately on top of a bed of greens. I like to mix the greens with a few chopped ripe tomatoes and some thinly sliced red onion. You can add a little oil and vinegar to the salad if you like before adding the cakes.
Serve lots of fresh tartar sauce and lemon wedges on the side.
To make the tartar sauce: Put all the ingredients into a jar that fits the head of your blender.
Set the head of the blender down at the bottom of the jar, and turn it on. Blend for a few seconds and as the sauce starts to thicken, gently raise the blender up to blend all of the contents. This will only take a few seconds. you can pulse the blender a few times to continue to thicken the tartar sauce.
Remove the blender, give the sauce a stir, and taste to adjust the seasoning. Screw the cap on the jar and keep refrigerated until needed. Use within a week to 10 days.
Dublin Lawyer With Rice
This delicious seafood consists of lobster meat flavoured with whisky and cream. If you’re starting with live lobster, check out our guide on how to prepare lobster. If you’re not keen on using lobster, you can always use prawns!
Whether you are watching a game at home with a few friends, planning a casual dinner party or simply looking for cooking inspiration, these recipes are made for you! These tasty seafood snacks are easy to make and use some of our favourite fish & seafood such as lobster, salmon or crab. Don’t hesitate to swap ingredients to suit your preferences, why not try monkfish, tuna or prawns?
Toss together tomato, radishes, onion, oil, lime juice, vinegar, and ¼ cup of the coriander in a bowl.
Place cheese in a medium saucepan. Sprinkle with cornflour; toss to combine. Add evaporated milk. Cook over medium-low, whisking often, until cheese melts and mixture thickens, 4 to 8 minutes. Whisk in salt.
Arrange tortilla chips in a single layer on a large serving platter. Drain tomato mixture; discard liquid. Top chips evenly with drained tomato mixture, lobster, and avocado. Drizzle evenly with cheese sauce. Sprinkle with remaining ¼ cup coriander.
Who doesn't love pizza? If you fancy something a little bit different, try this recipe pairing the freshness of crab to more traditional Italian flavours. Customise your pizza by adding your favourite toppings such as Italian ham, mushroom or olives!
4 preserved lemon quarters, white pith and flesh removed, zest thinly sliced
60g basil leaves
Juice of ½ lemon
⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
Place 2 large baking trays in the oven and preheat the oven to 220°C. Divide pizza dough in two, roll into two 30cm bases. Place each base on a piece of baking paper and prick all over with a fork.
Transfer to preheated trays and bake for 5 minutes or until crisp. Remove from oven and spread over pesto. Scatter with crab and mozzarella, return to oven and bake for a further 5 minutes or until the base is crisp and cheese is melted.
Scatter with preserved lemon and torn basil leaves, squeeze over lemon juice and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil to serve.
In a large pot, add the water, parsley, thyme, fish base, peppercorns, garlic and salt, bring to a boil. Add the lobster tail and cook it for about 12 minutes or until fully cooked through. Remove the lobster tail from the water and set it aside to cool.
Drain the liquid through a fine sieve and place it in a saucepan and keep it on a simmer.
In a large skillet with high sides, over medium heat, add the garlic, celery and shallots and cook them in the olive oil for about 4 to 6 minutes or until translucent. Add the canned tomatoes and let the mixture cook for about 1 minute.
Add the rice and coat it really well with the veggie mixture.
Add the wine and allow it to reduce, once the wine has reduced, one ladle full at a time, start adding in the lobster stock to the rice and only adding another ladle full when each one has been absorbed into the rice. Continue this process until the rice is pretty much mostly cooked through.
Remove the lobster from the shell and cut it into bite-sized pieces.
Add it to the rice along with one more ladle full of stock, the butter and cheese. Cover the pan with a lid and let it sit for about 3 minutes.
Uncover, add the parsley, stir and serve immediately!
In the first part of this complete guide, we have seen how to store and cook your lobster. Now it’s time to prepare it! Follow the instructions to learn how to extract the meat from the shell and claws.
How to prepare your cooked lobster:
Lay your lobster flat on a chopping board
Put the tip of a cooking knife in the middle of the body of the lobster and cut right between the eyes.
Continue cutting all along the body and tail. You should now be able to separate the lobster in two halves.
Remove and throw away the pale stomach sac, the gills and the dark intestinal thread that runs the length of the tail.
Crack the claw shell with a small hammer or simply using your cooking knife.
You can choose to serve the lobster in the shell; or delicately scrape the meat off the shell and claws.
Lobster is becoming increasingly available, but it somehow retains that feeling of luxury and is ideal to impress at dinner parties. This recipe enhances the delicate taste of the lobster with a smooth chickpea and coriander sauce full of flavour.
First make the chickpea sauce. Heat a dash of olive oil in a pan and fry off the shallots and garlic until soft. Add the spices followed by the chickpeas and half of the lemon juice. Pour in the stock and simmer for 5 minutes.
Transfer the sauce to a blender and blitz until smooth, drizzling in the remaining olive oil to thicken. Add salt, pepper and a little more lemon juice if needed. Set aside while you prepare the lobster.
Cook the lobster, following the method we shared in part 1 of this guide. Once cooked allow it to cool enough to handle.
Remove the meat from the shell and claws by following our instructions above this recipe.
Heat the sauce and add the herbs. Adjust the consistency if necessary with a little more stock.
To serve, divide the sauce between 2 bowls and lay half of the tail and one claw on each plate. Dress with a few drops of remaining lemon then serve.
We have gathered a few handy tips to enjoy our fresh lobsters at their best! This is the first part of our 2-part guide. In this part, we cover the storage and cooking.
If this is your first time cooking lobster, do not be afraid. It is actually way easier than you might think and our tips will make the experience much easier.
How to store your lobster:
Our lobsters are fresh and should be eaten on the day you receive them. It is important that the lobster is still alive and should be dispatched just before cooking.
Until you cook it the lobster should be stored wrapped in damp newspaper or tea towel and kept in the fridge.
Keep cooked lobster in its original packaging in the fridge, and eat as soon as possible.
How to cook your lobster:
There are many different ways a lobster could be dispatched but here are a few foolproof methods you can follow:
Keep your lobster in the freezer for one or two hours before cooking. This will slow down the metabolism of the lobster and make it unconscious. If you want to be extra safe, keep the rubber bands on the claws.
A common way to cook lobster is to boil it alive. If you have used the freezer method your lobster should not be moving a lot. Make sure you plunge it in boiling water head first to avoid it thrashing water.
If you wish to dispatch your lobster just before cooking, you can do so by cutting the spinal cord. Plunge the tip of a cooking knife straight down right behind the lobster’s eyes.
This table will give you an indication of how long you should be cooking your lobster. This is valid for boiling and steaming.
Lobster weight (Pounds)
Lobster weight (Kilos)
1lb to 1 ¼lb
1 ¼lb to 2lb
2lb to 3lb
450g to 520g
520g to 900g
900g to 1.35kg
How to know when your lobster is cooked:
The lobster will turn its characteristic bright red colour well before the meat is thoroughly cooked inside. Follow these tips to ensure that the lobster is cooked:
Tug on an antennae or pull off one of the small walking legs. If the lobster is done, they should both come off easily.
The meat inside the lobster will be firm, white and opaque The tomalley, which fills much of the body cavity will be greenish-yellow.
The roe in female lobsters will be bright orange-red and firm. If it is a dark greenish-black, with an oily tar-like consistency, the lobster is under cooked.
In the next part, we will share the techniques to prepare the lobster as well as a recipe for you to try!