Fruits de Mer is a seafood platter of raw and/or cooked shellfish usually served on a bed of ice. A long time ago I saw a beautiful fruits de mer platter in one of my favorite events books and have wanted to throw a party with a fruits of the sea platter.
Right before my Mohs Surgery to remove my skin cancer I really needed a good excuse to be distracted for the evening. I invited friends over for a big meal and made the above platter as an appetizer… boy, let me tell you. We didn’t need the meal! I actually made enough seafood for TWO of these large platters. Then we followed it up with steaks and veggies for dinner and then something for dessert. I’ve never been so full in my life!
Making this platter was much less intimidating than I originally thought. I used precooked crab and lobster… it would be even better with fresh shell fish, but it wasn’t readily available in my area. The whole thing was still delicious, but someday I plan to make it with all fresh shellfish. I’d also like to pair it with ceviche someday! YUM. Below is how I made this dish… know that it is completely easy to customize this dish to your cooking comfort level and your tastes. If you go to a great fish purveyor you can even asked for your lobster to be steamed and your oysters shucked… then there is NO work for you and your guests are completely wow’d!
Plateau de Fruits de Mer:
Great appetizer for a dinner party or can even be served as hors d’oeuvres at a cocktail party. One large platter will serve 4 easily. I served this dish with a tarter sauce, cocktail sauce, chile lime sauce and butter.
To Build Platter (Just Like Above):
Cooking directions below this list!
Ice: Cover a large platter or bowl with ice.
Crab Legs: Add cooked and cooled crab legs to platter. It is also helpful to go ahead and pre-crack the crab legs so it is easy for your guests to take out the meat.
Lobster claws: I was fortunate enough to find lobster claws already cut and pre-cracked for me! While I believe fresh lobster would have been even more amazing… the convenience of these little suckers was too good to pass up! I did go ahead and boil them quickly in a flavorful broth (see below) and then cooled quickly before placing on the platter.
Shrimp: I got the largest sized raw, shell on (deveined) shrimp. After cooking I peeled the shrimp and placed on the platter. Easy peasy!
Oysters: I spent all day looking up how to shuck oysters. I’d been SO excited about shucking oysters. However, the whole foods that these puppies came from cleaned and shucked them for me! I just got them same day and kept them on ice until serving! So, no directions below on how to shuck oysters… but, check out this oyster shucking resource if you’re in the mood to get your shuck on!
Cucumbers filled with spicy salmon: This was a creation of my own. They turned out pretty good… though, next time I’ll go with a sashimi grade salmon rather than cooking my salmon first.
Crab, Lobster, and Shrimp:
Get a large ice bath prepared and put to the side.
In a large pot bring 2 gallons of water, 1 pint vegetable stock, 3 Bay Leaves, a Tablespoon of black peppercorns, and 1/2 bottle of dry white wine to boil.
In batches cook the seafood. If cooking from live you want to do about 10 minutes for your lobster and crab. Move directly to ice bath once finished. For pre-steamed crab and lobster you’ll be infusing the shellfish with flavor and heating it back up to temp for about 8 minutes. Transfer to the ice bath. Finally, cook the shrimp. The shrimp will be dense and pink in about 3 minutes. Transfer shrimp to ice bath. Peel once cooled. Bring the liquid to a boil again between each batch.
Cucumbers filled with spicy salmon:
two cucumbers, cut into 1 to 1 1/2 inch portions
10 oz of cooked salmon shredded (or, use sashimi grade salmon diced!)
1 Tablespoon Siracha
1 Tablespoon of Mayo (I used kewpie mayonaise)
Juice of one lime
Sprinkle of cilantro for garnish
Using a melon baller or spoon take out most of the center of the cucumber portion. Leave a little on the bottom to hold in the filling.
Mix the salmon, siracha, mayo, and lime juice together in a bowl.
Fill the cucumber portions with mixture.
Sprinkle on the cilantro and enjoy!
What would you think if you went to a party and saw a Fruits De Mer? Would you ever try one at your own dinner table?