Seafood salad is the symbol of summer. Knowing how to dress this dish makes it taste even fresher and more delicious

Seafood salad is an hors d’oeuvre which can also be enjoyed as a main course, consisting of boiled or steamed shellfish dressed, in the traditional version, with an emulsion of olive oil, lemon and parsley. A triumph of colours and flavours, made up of shrimps, octopus, squid, mussels and clams, often accompanied by a seasonal salad or cooked vegetables.

Aromatic emulsions: here are Zucchi’s ideas for dressing a seafood salad

  • Traditional: a citronette made from extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper, whisked with a hand-whisk or a fork, with finely chopped parsley to give the final touch.
  • Tangy: grate orange and lemon rind and dress with extra virgin olive oil, pink peppercorns and a pinch of salt. The salad will be steeped in the fragrance, bringing an intoxicating perfume to your table.
  • Light: very finely chopped celery and carrots, left to marinade with shallot-flavoured olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
  • Rich: for some people, mayonnaise is simply the only way to dress a seafood salad. For a healthier version, it can be home-made with fresh eggs, extra virgin olive oil and lemon juice.
  • Green: try making an emulsion from basil leaves, mint, extra virgin olive oil and just a little water. The dressing, with a strongly Mediterranean flavour, will bring a touch of unexpected creativity to the dishes you serve.

Times and dressings

Time is of the essence when preparing food. Once you’ve made your aromatic condiment, what’s the best way to dress a seafood salad? When the shellfish and crustaceans have cooled after cooking, pour some of the dressing delicately into the bottom of a round bowl, add the salad and then cover it again with the rest of the dressing. Stir with a spoon from the bottom upward and leave to stand in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. The salad can be kept in the fridge for no more than two days. Before serving, remove from the refrigerator and leave to warm slightly.