For all-round ‘Ouzo-time’ but especially in relaxed sunshine, on the veranda. It’s also good for a gourmet treat during fasting! A seafood parcel of scampi and crabs, which, when opened, is unlikely to leave anyone unaffected. This combination was tested at a Sunday gathering with meze-trained friends and was greatly appreciated.
The key to the great taste is the freshness of the ingredients, obviously, but if you can’t find fresh crabs for instance, it’s better to omit them. Neither the scampi nor the crabs need to be the large size (so this dish is more economical) nor do they need any preparation. Even if someone is a fanatical knife and fork user, they won’t regret getting their hands dirty for this one. As the Greek saying goes, crab is not known for giving a lot of juice but this recipe absolutely refutes that, so you must ensure that a) there is plenty of good bread to make it completely worth mopping up the delicious lemon flavoured juices and b) there are plenty of napkins on the table. Don’t omit the lemon leaves as they are the essence of the whole dish.
In this recipe, all the ingredients are placed in one parcel, so, in the same way, individual parcels could be made, so each person could open his own on their plate. Such a surprise would work very well as a starter.
Preparation: 10 minutes plus 15 minutes cooking time. Quick and easy recipe.
Ingredients (for 4 people)
750 gr scampi and crabs, all small and medium size
6-7 lemon leaves, cleaned
2cm piece of ginger, cleaned and finely diced(grated?)
2-3 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp whole mixed peppercorns
Coarse ground black pepper
1 pinch coarse salt
1 spring onion-from the white part up to the green thinly sliced- then the green part cut into 8 cm long strips
2 tbsp finely chopped parsley
Baking parchment-approx 120cm and kitchen twine
Preheat the oven to 160 C degrees.
To prepare the parcels: Fold the baking parchment in two so you have a piece about 60cm long and place the lemon leaves in the centre in an elongated line. Add the seafood on top and arrange the rest of the ingredients on top. Close the parcel by folding in two and firmly close the edges with the kitchen twine to ensure no juices escape. You may need to add another piece of parchment to the width and tie it in the middle (this is not shown in the photo but it is good to ensure that it remains completely sealed so the inside can cook in the steam).
Cook in preheated oven for 15 mins.
To serve: Place the parcel on a serving plate large enough to allow the parcel to be opened easily, then take straight to the table so the first whiff can be enjoyed by all. That’s all!