Seafood trio
19th October 2011

Seafood trio

By Lauren Photography by Adam

Feeling particularly patriotic with all the Rugby World Cup fever around the place, I got to thinking about what makes us New Zealanders. The thing about New Zealand is that you are never more than a few hours drive from water.  Being an island nation, we are surrounded by coastline, dotted with lakes large and small, and crisscrossed by rivers.  I can’t help feeling that you can’t get much more Kiwi than watching the All Blacks play (and win of course) while tucking into a plate of seafood!

To create my seafood trio I selected some fresh Nelson scallops, West Coast whitebait and made some tasty Paua patties with a surprise ingredient – a few finely chopped dates to add a hint of sweetness.  For the whitebait I chose to simply flash fry the little suckers in a bit of olive oil and butter, season and toss with a squeeze of lemon juice.  Delicious!  To play on the black and white theme I topped with some seaweed caviar for a satisfyingly salty finish.  Ditto for the scallops – when fresh off the boat they love nothing better than a kiss of butter, a sprinkling of salt and a couple of minutes in a hot pan.  Serve the lot with lemon wedges and a dollop of tartare sauce.


Serves 4
  • Paua patties
  • 100g paua mince
  • 1 egg
  • 3 shallots, minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Finely grated zest of half a lemon
  • 3 dried dates, very finely chopped
  • ½ cup flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • Salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • ½ cup milk
  • Scallops
  • 12 scallops
  • Butter and olive oil for frying
  • Salt and pepper
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Whitebait
  • 100g Whitebait
  • Butter and olive oil for frying
  • Salt and pepper
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 4 tsp seaweed caviar
  • --
  • Tartare sauce and lemon wedges to serve


  • Paua patties
  • 1. Combine paua mince, egg, shallots, garlic, lemon zest and dates in a medium sized bowl.
  • 2. Sift in flour and baking powder, season well, and add enough milk to make a relatively loose fritter mix.
  • 3. Heat a heavy based frying pan over a medium-high heat, add a dollop of oil and a knob of butter. Once butter is sizzling, fry tablespoons of batter for just a couple of minutes each side, until golden.
  • Scallops
  • Fry scallops over a medium-high heat in butter and oil for two minutes each side. Season well with salt, squeeze over lemon juice. Set aside for a minute while you fry the whitebait.
  • Whitebait
  • Fry whitebait over a medium-high heat in butter and oil for one minute – once the flesh turns white remove from pan, toss with lemon juice, salt and pepper and serve immediately toped with a teaspoon of seaweed caviar.


    1. machiko

      Yum! Love your simple take on the scallops and whitebait. Dates sounds like an interesting mix for the paua patties. Beautiful styling too!

    2. Lauren

      Thanks Machiko! The dates add a really lovely hint of sweetness to the paua patties – give them a try :)

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