Full disclosure: Seafood is completely out of my comfort zone. I’m not a fan of it, mostly because I have a track record of bad run-ins with it. The few times I have enjoyed seafood was on a shoreline cooking up what we just caught and there were more than a few Busch involved.
On with the show.
Today I’m making crab cakes. Not because I like them or have any inclination to eat them, but there are some valuable lessons I can learn. The most important is cooking outside your comfort zone.
Luckily if you’re comfortable with seafood, you also get to learn how to chop and how egg white can be a binding agent – who knew cooking was so scientific?
What you’ll need:
1 Scallion – or in normal language, a green fucking onion. (I was enraged about this)
2 Cans of Crab Meat (Get the good stuff, it’s worth it. If you can, get fresh)1 Egg White
10 Turns of Fresh Ground Pepper
2 T EVOO
1 T Harrissa Sauce (Found out this is fancy for chile sauce. Your preferred spicy sauce will work perfectly)
First step, de-yolk that egg and put it in a large mixing bowl.
Next thing, chop that onion. You want it to be nice little pieces, about 1/8″. Toss them in the bowl too.
Open your cans of crab, and drain out all that water. Once you think its drained, drain it again and then add them to the bowl.
Take your pepper and give 10 good turns into the bowl.
Take a nice big tablespoon of your preferred chile sauce and toss that right in there too. This is the ingredient where it pays to know your audience. Since this is the dominant spice, pick one that appeals to your guests. I made these for my Oma. She’s 91 and has 0 tolerance for spice. I used Frank’s Sweet Chili to tone down the spicy factor.
Mix all of this up until you have a nice consistency. If you’re portioning for guests, 2 cans is SUPPOSED to make 4 patties. Be open to how you serve these if you aren’t familiar with cooking crab cakes. Remove as much excess water as you can.
Heat up a large frying pan and add 2 T of EVOO. Get the pan hot and throw your patties/cakes on. Let them cook for 3 minutes. Do not touch, adjust, shake, poke. etc. these things. They are delicate. You will mess them up and you will not have nice looking cakes.
After 3 minutes, get your biggest flipper and do your best to flip them. I’m saying it this way because my 4 cakes turned into 9 when i tried to flip them. I’m not sure why they broke apart, but this is a learning process and really, the cakes are just for portioning and presentation. Let your cakes cook for another uninterrupted 3 minutes.
Once your crab cakes are cooked plate them and squeeze some fresh lime juice on them. As earlier stated, I’m not a seafood eater. But I’ll always at least taste-test my own cooking. From my limited experience it tasted decent. Kind of like a fishy pancake, but that seems to be exactly what it is.
I presented them to Oma and she was skeptical at first. Within 5 minutes the plate was clear. Sounds like a success to me.
If you try this one I hope you get better results. What mine lacked in presentation at least was made up for in taste.
PS. Even if it doesn’t turn out, you have a lime cut and it’s nothing some Reposado can’t fix.