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Creative Cooking: Beach Bliss Grill (PHOTOS)

Posted: 06/02/2013 8:27 am

From the Amalfi Coast and French Riveria to the California and New England coasts, there are beaches for every taste and style. Summer is almost here, so why not entertain your friends and family with a beach blast, laid back and casual yet with just the right touch of chic? It doesn't matter how far inland you are--with enough design and creativity, you can be anywhere your imagination takes you.

Start the evening with a fun exotic cocktail, like a modern twist on a mojito.
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Appetizers can be healthy, light summer fare, like tuna Carpaccio with wasabi mayo.
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Fire up the grill to cook the day's fresh catch, Branzino (Mediterrean Sea Bass), sprinkled with fresh lemon thyme and parsley sprigs and serve with ladolemono sauce. On the side, a fava bean salad, and a quinoa salad with hearts of palm, mint leaves, and grilled corn kernels. Conclude the meal with a light lemon Italian almond cake and cupcakes topped with beach ball, starfish, flip flop, and palm tree decorations, serve up on a beach-theme styled dessert table.

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Delightfully decorative, and divinely delicious edibles by Eat My Words.

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Desserts by Petite & Sweet

Recipes by: Neil Noseworthy at TasteWorthy Cuisine
Photo Credit: Mark Luciani


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Ginger Mojitos
• Sprigs of mint
• Lime cut into 8 wedges that are then cut in half (16 pieces per lime)
• Sugar cubes
• Simple syrup made of equal parts water and sugar, heated to dissolve
• Cachaça or white rum
• Soda water
• Freshly grated ginger


Assembly
Place 1 sprig of mint, 1 sugar cube and 3 pieces of lime in glass and mush with a muddler. Add 1 oz rum, 2 oz simple syrup, and top with a splash of soda water and ice to the top. Garnish with a sprig of mint and freshly grated ginger.

Raspberry Mojitos
Add a tablespoon of blended raspberries, place 2 fresh raspberries on top along with a sprig of mint.

Lychee Martini
Add lychee juice instead of simple syrup and garnish with a peeled lychee fruit and a sprig of mint.

Lemon Dill Vinaigrette
15 min prep time

• Juice of 2 lemons (4 oz)
• 4oz White vinegar
• 12oz olive oil
• Splash of water
• 2 teaspoons of white sugar or sweetener
• 2 cloves of chopped garlic
• ¼ cup of chopped fresh dill
• Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation
Mix all ingredients together and shake or whip together. Store in the fridge in a bottle. Lasts in the fridge for several months.

Fava Bean Salad
with yellow grape tomato, Jicama, and shaved parmesan cheese. Dressed with a lemon dill vinaigrette.
20 minutes prep time

• 1 can fava beans
• 1 quart yellow grape, cherry, or tear drop tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise
• 1 small jicama, fine diced into 1/4 " cubes
• 4oz shaved Parmigiano Reggiano
• Zest of 2 lemons

Preparation
Mix ingredients together and add enough lemon dill vinaigrette to coat the salad (save the rest for another day). Cover and let flavors infuse in the fridge for 4 hours or overnight.

Extreme Tuna Trio
Tuna Carpaccio served with lemon vinaigrette and sliced baguette surrounding an inverted martini glass. Encased in the martini glass bowl is diced sesame ginger tuna. High on top of the glass base is thin sliced tuna sashimi with wasabi mayo

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For 8 servings

• 1.5 lb of tuna loin sushi Grade A

Carpaccio Tuna with sliced baguette
• 3-4 sprigs fresh thyme leaves chopped
• 2 fresh garlic cloves chopped
• Fresh ground black pepper (to taste)
• Sea salt (to taste)
• 1 tbs olive oil to coat Carpaccio
• ¼ cup olive oil to sear Carpaccio
• Drizzle olive oil over Carpaccio
• Sliced baguette
• Long narrow 1.5" piece of the loin
• Arugula
• 1/4lb shaved parmesan piece

Preparation of Carpaccio
Once the loin has been trimmed 4 to 6" long and 1.5" wide, coat with thyme, garlic, a smidge of salt and pepper and oil. Wrap in cling wrap and place in fridge for 30 minutes. Once chilled, loin can be seared in hot olive oil in a fry pan, 10 seconds each side. Wrap again in cling wrap and place in freezer to firm up for slicing thin. After 30 minutes, slice into thin medallions carefully by hand or on a meat slicer, and reserve for plating in the fridge.

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Sashimi Tuna with Wasabi Aioli
• Need a long rectangular piece of tuna from the 1.5 lb piece of loin, 4" to 6" long by 2" wide and 1" high.
• Japanese mayo
• Wasabi or Wasabi powder to be prepared
• Red Caviar (select one you prefer or that is at the right price point.)

Preparation of Sashimi

Trim loin to yield a long narrow piece of tuna, wrap and place in freezer for 30 minutes to kill bacteria and allow for tuna to be cut into thin rectangular pieces for plating.

Mix mayonaise and wasabi together, ¼ cup mayo to ½ teaspoon of wasabi (more if you prefer spicy). Place mixture in a squeeze bottle and reserve for plating.

Assembly

Sesame tuna
Place sprig of frisée on the center of a plate large or small. Place a table spoon of sesame tune on frisée. Then place an inverted martini glass over the sesame tuna.

Carpaccio
Around the base of the glass place 2 to 3 slices of Carpaccio depending on how many slices you were able to get out of your piece of loin. Place 2 or 3 slices of baguette in between slices of Carpaccio. Use arugula leaves coated in oil and vinegar for garnish. Sprinkle Carpaccio with Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and a drizzle of olive oil.

Sashimi
Shingle 2 to 3 slices of precut tuna sashimi on the base of the inverted glass, then squirt a squiggle of the pre made Wasabi aioli over it.

Place a small dollop of red caviar on top for garnish.

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Branzino
• 1 3-pound box coarse kosher salt
• 5 (or more) large egg whites
• 2 1- to 1-1/2-pound whole branzino, loup de mer, or sea bass, gutted (can be filleted if you prefer)*
• 8 fresh parsley sprigs
• 2 fresh thyme sprigs
• 4 thin lemon slices
* The French call it loup de mer and the Italians call it branzino, but it's the same fish -- Mediterranean sea bass.

Salsa Verde (optional)
• 1 lemon
• 1/4 cup finely diced celery
• 1/4 cup finely diced cucumber
• 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
• 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
• 2 tablespoons drained small capers
• 2 tablespoons sliced pitted brine-cured green olives (such as picholine)
• 3 cups arugula

Preparation

Salsa Verde
Using small sharp knife, remove peel and white pith from lemon. Working over bowl, cut between membranes to release segments. Cut each segment into 3 pieces. Add lemon pieces and the rest of the ingredients (except arugula) to bowl.
Spoon salsa verde over fish, leaving juices in bowl. Add arugula to bowl; toss to coat.

Whole Fish
Preheat oven to 400°F. Stir salt and 5 egg whites in large bowl, adding more egg whites as needed to form grainy paste. Press 1/4-inch layer of salt mixture (large enough to hold both fish) onto large rimmed baking sheet. Stuff cavity of each whole fish with half of herb sprigs and lemon slices. Place fish atop salt mixture on baking sheet. Pack remaining salt mixture over fish to enclose completely. Roast about 20 minutes, until thermometer inserted into thickest part of fish registers 135°F. Let stand 10 minutes.

Using back of large spoon, gently crack open salt crust on fish. Lift and discard salt layer. Pull skin from top of 1 fish. Carefully lift top fillet from bones and transfer to plate. Lift and discard bones. Gently lift second fillet from skin and transfer to second plate. Repeat with second fish for a total of 4 plates.

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For Fillets
Leave the skin on to help hold fish together on the grill. Marinate fish with lemon juice, chopped parsley, chopped thyme, olive oil, sea salt and fresh ground black pepper in fridge for 1 to 3 hours. Pre-heat grill to high temp.

Place fish on the grill skin side up at a slight angle. Cook until golden brown lines on the fish have formed (2-3 min). Lift gently from the grill and place the skin side down. Cook for another 2-3min and remove from grill and place on a baking sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Place thin sliced lemon rings on fish and salsa verde (if desired hot) and continue to bake in 300 degree oven for 12 minutes. Fish will be tender and juicy.
Serve with arugula greens.

 

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