Sunday, March 14, 2010

Crab Cakes with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce and Chopped Salad

I have made this meal a few times now--and we've enjoyed it every time. The salad is extremely quick to make. The simple tart and slightly spicy flavor of the salad complements the crab cakes perfectly. If desired, you can make the sauce ahead. The crab cake mixture can also be made ahead (including shaping the patties) so at dinner time all you have to do is cook the patties and toss together the salad.

Recipes from Rachael Ray.

Crab Cakes:

1 cup cracker meal (or use finely crushed saltines)
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup milk
12 ounces lump crab meat, picked over to remove any shell fragments
1 rounded teaspoon crab boil seasoning
1 tablespoon baking powder
A handful flat leaf parsley, chopped
1 lemon, zested, plus 1 lemon, cut into wedges, for garnish
1 rib celery from the heart of the stalk, finely chopped
Several drops Worcestershire sauce
Several drops hot pepper sauce
2 tablespoons mayonnaise or ranch dressing
Vegetable or canola oil, for frying

Red Pepper Sauce:

1 (8-ounce) jar roasted red peppers, drained, or 1 large freshly prepared roasted red pepper
1 cup mayonnaise or reduced fat mayonnaise
1/2 cup prepared chili sauce

Place cracker meal in a bowl and make a well in the center of the meal. Beat egg with milk and pour into well. Moisten cracker meal and combine liquid with meal using the tines of a fork. Add crab meat, crab boil seasoning, baking powder, parsley, lemon zest, celery, Worcestershire, hot pepper sauce, and mayonnaise to the bowl. Mix all ingredients well and form into 8 (3-inch) patties. Add 1/2-inch vegetable or canola oil to a skillet and heat to medium high temperature. Fry cakes 3 minutes on each side and drain on paper towel lined plate. Cook 4 cakes at a time, so that oil temp does not drop too low.

For red pepper sauce, combine drained red peppers in a food processor bowl with mayonnaise and chili sauce. Pulse/grind the ingredients into a smooth sauce.

Transfer sauce to a small serving dish.

Serve crab cakes with sauce and lemon wedges.

Chopped Salad

2 romaine lettuce hearts, coarsely chopped
1 cup drained giardiniera salad (regular or hot pickled vegetables)—available in jars on aisle where pickles are sold
1 lemon, juiced
Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For salad, place chopped greens in a serving dish and combine with coarsely chopped giardiniera salad. Dress salad with a little lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper, to your taste

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