I am not an easy person to cook for. It isn’t because I am picky, because I have dietary restrictions or because I’m a food snob. It’s because when you’re cooking for me, my requirement is that I be able to put the recipe on my blog (assuming, of course, that said recipe will be nothing short of spectacular).
This summer I have been dating someone who likes to cook as much as I do. Yet, while I rarely cook without jotting proportions and measurements on the cluttered chalkboard that hangs next to the cabinet over my sink, he swears by not measuring or using recipes.
Last week, he offered to come over on a Monday night and cook us dinner. What started as a low-key dinner for the two of us soon evolved into an invitation to two more of our friends and before long, we were making an impromptu dinner party for eight that included a raw seafood platter, three pounds of beef tenderloin, maple-glazed salmon, mashed red bliss potatoes and two homemade pies.
Despite the expansion of our menu, I mentioned that we had to stick to the original rule: at least one thing that we cooked needed to be “blog-worthy.”
That’s a word in the dictionary, right?
Even though pretty much everything we consumed last Monday night was worthy of internet fame (more about that pie later) it was soon certain that the first thing from the dinner party that needed to hit the Interwebs were the crab cakes with spicy remoulade. The crab cakes were melt-in-your mouth good and the sauce? Well, you might want to eat it by the spoonful.
- 1 pound lump crab meat, drained, shell fragments removed
- 1 bell pepper, diced (red, green, yellow or a combination of any of the three)
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- ½ cup Panko breadcrumbs
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice (about ½ large lemon)
- 2 green onions, white and green parts, finely diced
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- Canola oil, as needed
- Preheat an oven to about 350 degrees F.
- Combine first ten ingredients in a large bowl. Using your hands, take a scoop of the crab mixture and form it into a patty that is approximately 2 inches across and ¾ inches thick. For appetizer size, you can make the patties smaller and thinner, which will yield more cakes.
- Continue until you've made about 12 large or 20 small crab cake patties. If the mixture feels sticky, dust the sides with additional breadcrumbs.
- Heat a large skillet or frying pan over medium-high heat and coat the bottom of the pan with canola oil (about two tablespoons). Place the crab cakes in the pan in one layer and cook until golden brown, about 2 minutes on each side. Transfer to a baking sheet. Repeat with remaining patties and the bake crab cakes in 350 degree oven for about eight minutes or until evenly browned. Serve immediately.
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley leaves
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped green onions (both green and white parts)
- 2 tablespoons sweet relish
- ¼ teaspoon paprika
- ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ½ cup low-fat mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- Combine all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse for 30 seconds or until all ingredients are combined and mixture is smooth. Use immediately or store in the refrigerator until chilled. Sauce will keep for up to three days in an air tight container in the fridge. Makes approximately ¾ cup.