Learning to Use Herbs and Spices: Seafood Tips and Recipes

Learning to Use Herbs and Spices: Seafood Tips and Recipes
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Herbs and Spices for SeafoodWhat herbs go well with fish and seafood? Fresh dill, garlic, chives, summer savory, rosemary, parsley, marjoram, basil, tarragon, and the lemon herbs such as lemon balm, lemon thyme and lemon basil can be used in cooking seafood. Cilantro is also used for spicing up shrimp, especially if it's marinated and grilled. If you are grilling or baking a whole fish, stuff it with a handful of mixed herbs and garlic, and a few squirts of fresh lemon juice. You can also top baked or grilled fish fillets with pesto for a nice dish.

Make a crumb crust to top fish fillets with before baking by combining:

2 tablespoons olive oil
5 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
2 tablespoons minced fresh lemon thyme
5 tablespoons dry breadcrumbs

Top the fish fillets with this mixture and bake, broil or grill till white and flaky.

Fresh dill is one of my favorite herbs to use with seafood. Freeze dills leaves in freezer bags to use year round. Take out what you need and mince while frozen. There's no need to thaw.

I also make dill and garlic vinegar and add it in place of lemon juice in seafood recipes. This is especially good in salmon patties. Simply place a large handful of fresh dill and two peeled garlic cloves in a quart jar. Cover with wine or white vinegar, making sure the dill is not above the vinegar. Put on the lid and allow it to sit for 3-4 weeks. Strain and use in marinades, sautéing, dressings and stews.

Simple Shrimp Scampi

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 pounds medium to large shrimp, peeled and deveined
3 tablespoons butter
4 medium garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons juice from 1 lemon
1 tbsp. herb vinegar- (or white wine)
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
Pinch cayenne pepper
Salt and ground black pepper

Heat a large skillet over high heat, and add 1 tablespoon oil to coat the bottom of pan. Add 1 pound shrimp and cook, stirring occasionally, until just opaque, about 1 minute; transfer to a medium bowl. Return pan to heat and repeat process with the remaining oil and shrimp. When finished return empty skillet to medium-low heat; melt 1 tablespoon butter. Add garlic and sauté about 30 seconds. Remove from heat and add the lemon juice and vinegar. Whisk in remaining 2 tablespoons butter; add parsley and cayenne, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Return shrimp and the juices to skillet. Toss to combine; serve immediately over cooked pasta or rice.

Pasta With Scallops and Shrimp

2 cups chopped sweet onion
1/2 cup chopped carrot
1 cup chicken broth
2 cloves garlic, minced
1-1/2 cups tomato juice, regular or spicy
2 tablespoons herb vinegar
1 (14-1/2-ounce) can whole tomatoes, undrained
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup uncooked medium pasta shells
1 cup chopped fresh mushrooms
1/2 cup chopped yellow summer squash
1/2 cup chopped zucchini
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon fresh, minced dill
2 tablespoons chopped basil
1/4 teaspoon salt
12 raw large shrimp, peeled, deveined
6 ounces sea scallops
Optional: Dash or two of red pepper flakes

Place the tomatoes in the blender with the juices to chop roughly. Set aside. Cook onions, carrots, broth and garlic in 2-quart saucepan over medium heat 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in tomato juice, lemon juice, tomatoes, and bay leaf. Reduce heat. Simmer covered 10 minutes. Stir in pasta. Cook 7 minutes. Stir in remaining ingredients. Cover and cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until shrimp are pink. Makes 6 servings

Sea Scallops with Lemon Butter

1 lb. sea scallops
1/3 cup flour
1 tsp. paprika
salt and pepper to taste
4 tbsp. butter
2 tbsp. lemon juice
chopped fresh parsley and dill
lemon wedges

In a small bowl, combine flour, paprika, salt and pepper. Dredge scallops in flour mixture and shake off any excess flour. In a large skillet, melt 2 tbsp. butter over medium heat. Add scallops and cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown, 3-5 minutes. Remove to plate. Reduce heat to low. Add remaining 2 tbsp. butter to the pan and cook until melted, Mix in lemon juice. Spoon sauce over scallops and sprinkle with parsley and dill. Garnish with lemon wedges. Serves 4.

Mustard Dill Basted Fish

1 1/3 pounds salmon steaks or fillets (or other firm fish)
1 tsp. garlic, minced
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. fresh dill
4 1/2 tbsp. lemon juice

In small pan, over low heat, sauté garlic in oil briefly. Stir in the mustard, dill and lemon juice; remove from heat. Place fish on well greased broiling pan and baste with mustard dill mixture. Broil 4-5 inches from the heat for 10 minutes per inch of thickness, basting frequently and turning halfway through the cooking time. Cook until fish flakes easily with a fork. Serves 4.

Sole With Herbs

4 filets of Sole
1 tbsp. lemon juice
2 tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
1 tsp. chopped rosemary
1 tbsp. chopped basil
1 tbsp. chopped shallot or sweet onion
salt and pepper to taste

Season the fish with salt and pepper. Cut squares of parchment paper or foil about 4 times the size of the filet. Place one filet in each packet. Mix the herbs with the lemon juice. Add one tbsp. of the herb mixture on the top of each filet. Fold the parchment or foil to seal it. Try to pull up slightly when folding so there is space between the fish and the packet. Place packages on a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes.

Seafood Seasoning

2 tbsp. ground allspice
2 tbsp. celery salt
2 tbsp. mustard powder
1 tsp. ground ginger
1 tbsp. paprika
3/4 tsp. cayenne pepper

Combine and keep in a covered container. Use to sprinkle fish fillets before broiling or grilling. Season chowder, crab cakes or salmon patties. Add to tuna salad or seafood dips and spreads. Makes a 1/2 cup.

Salmon Loaf

2 cups cooked fresh boned salmon or 1 lb. canned salmon
3-4 tsp. liquid from salmon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 tbsp. minced fresh parsley
1 1/2 tbsp. minced onion
1 tbsp. chopped fresh lemon thyme or other lemon herb
1 tbsp. fresh minced dill
1 1/2 cups soft bread crumbs
2 eggs, slightly beaten
3/4 cups plus 1 tbsp. milk
1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice or dill vinegar

Preheat oven to 400° Place the salmon and liquid into mixing bowl. Add the seasonings, onion and bread crumbs and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon. In separate bowl, whisk together egg and milk and to the salmon mixture. Stir in lemon juice or vinegar. Place in a buttered or sprayed glass loaf pan. Bake until lightly browned, about 40-45 minutes. Makes 6-8 servings.


Image: Wikimedia.org


About The Author

Brenda Hyde is a freelance writer living on ten acres in rural Michigan with her husband and three kids. She is a mom, grandma, gardener, cook and writer. She blogs on all of these topics at Harvestmoongazette.blogspot.com.


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