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Crab Cakes

June 10, 2019

Recipe adapted from Food Is The Solution by Matthew Prescott.  [Recipe serves 4].

Crab cakes have been on our list of dishes to attempt for months now (as well as cooking with heart of palm for our first time), and this past week, we finally tackled both.  In the future, we will keep the original recipe the same, with the exception of cutting down on the amount of Old Bay used.  The original recipe calls for mixing the spice into the crab cake mixture, as well as coating the outsides in a mixture of bread crumbs and additional spice.  This may be fine for some people, but for us, it was way too salty, so we omitted using additional Old Bay on the breading.

Besides that, these were a nice switch up to our normal dinner rotation, and totally passed the test as a "crab" cake.  We served them up with some seasoned roasted Yukon potatoes and fresh green beans sautéeed with slivers of garlic, but any summer side dish would go great (vegan coleslaw anyone?).

INGREDIENTS:

Tartar sauce:
1/4 cup vegan mayo
2 teaspoons sweet relish
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Pinch of kosher salt
Freshly cracked black pepper

Crab cakes:
1 (14-oz) can hearts of palm, drained

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup minced onion
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1/4 cup minced bell pepper
1-1/4 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels

1 cup Panko bread crumbs, divided
2-1/2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon Old Bay seasoning
1/4 cup vegan mayo

(Up to) 1/4 cup vegetable oil or vegan butter, for frying

DIRECTIONS:

For the tartar sauce, combine the mayo, relish, mustard, lemon juice, salt, and pepper.  Transfer to the refrigerator.

For the crab cakes, begin by thinly slicing the hearts of palm lengthwise, and then chopping them into a small dice.  Reserve.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil, followed by the onion, garlic, and bell pepper.  Cook for roughly 4 minutes.  Add the corn and sauté for another minute.  Transfer the cooked vegetables to a large mixing bowl and add the diced hearts of palm, 1/3 cup bread crumbs, parsley, mustard, Old Bay, and mayo.  Mix to combine.  Cover and transfer to the refrigerator to let the mixture set for roughly 30 minutes.  [Side note:  At this point, use your judgment to see if the mixture seems form-able, or if it needs more Panko or mayo to bind].

Either by hand or using a ring mold, form the mixture into patties (roughly 1/4 cup each), and transfer them to a sheet pan.  [Side note:  We found that it's best not to go too thin, as the patties will have a harder time staying together while they get fried].

Give your large nonstick skillet a quick cleaning, and bring to a medium-low to medium heat (depending on your burner).  Add at least 1 tablespoon of oil or vegan butter.  Wait a few seconds and then add half of your crab cakes, making sure not to overcrowd the pan.  Cook for a few minutes without moving them too much, and then when they are crispy and have nice color, give them a gentle flip.  Once golden and crisp on the other side, transfer to a wire rack and repeat with the remaining crab cakes.

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