Monday, June 28, 2010

"Crab" Cakes with Spicy Red Pepper Sauce














In case  you were wondering what to do with the frozen leftover chipotle peppers after making Chimichangas, here's your chance to use up another one.  This recipe is pretty easy, but there are too many steps to officially label it so.  So I didn't.

The original recipe stressed several times the importance of refrigerating the cakes a minimum of a half hour in order to firm them up.  However, I had this BRILLIANT idea of putting the cakes on waxed paper on the cookie sheet so that after chilling I could simply slide them off onto the parchment paper.  Except that after chilling for the required minimum, they refused to simply slide off, instead becoming totally mangled and shredded.  EACH AND EVERY ONE OF THEM!  I had to remush them all back into shape, thus totally losing the chill advantage.   Since they cooked up fine anyway,  you can fuggedabout it as well.

I missed the part about baking 10 minutes on each side.  Since the tops weren't browning, I baked 'em for another 5 minutes then gave up.  Shoulda served them browned-side up, but wasn't thinking about anything except eating them.  So may I stress here, flip the suckers after the first 10 minutes and both sides will magically brown.

The red pepper in the "crab" cake was intentionally demoted to optional because hubby normally is a devout non-pepper-eater.  At least he was until he tasted the red pepper in the sauce.  I plan to add it next time (he called this recipe a KEEPER!)

Had to pull out all my garden scallions last week or so and haven't gotten around to purchasing more.  But my chives are growing nicely so they subbed without too much of a problem.

You can use parsley instead of the cilantro here.  I prefer the cilantro because it's spicy flavor compliments the spicy pepper sauce. 

You can use Ritz brand crackers if you prefer, but then the recipe becomes dairy.  ShopRite "Hits" crackers, to name one source, is o-u parve, yet tastes the same to me.  So it's up to you.

"Crab" Cakes with Spicy Red Pepper Sauce
Adapted from Gina's Weight Watcher Recipes
Makes 8 "crab" cakes, 4 servings

1 pkg. imitation crab meat (454 gms., about 1 lb.)
15 store-brand's parve equivalent of Ritz crackers (or use the real thing for a dairy "crab" cake)
2 eggs
2 scallions, green part only, finely chopped
2 Tbl. finely chopped red bell pepper (optional)
2 Tbl. mayonnaise
1/4 cup fresh cilantro (or parsley), finely chopped
1 lime, divided
1/2 tsp. salt or to taste
1/4 tsp. coarsely ground black pepper
2 large pieces roasted peppers (jar is ok)
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 chili from a can of chipotlepeppers in adobo sauce

Preheat oven to 400°. Lay a sheet of parchment paper on a large  cookie sheet (or, alternatively, spray cookie sheet with cooking spray).  Set aside.














Coarsely chop up imitation crab and place in a large bowl.














Crush or (if you're too lazy to reach into the pantry to get a bag to crush them) chop up crackers.














No need to finely crush them into sand, leave small pieces for texture.















Add it to the same bowl as the "crab," along with
eggs, scallions, pepper, mayo, cilantro, juice from about 2/3 of a lime, salt and pepper. Combine completely, then shape into 8 patties.














Place patties on prepared cookie sheet about an inch or two apart.   Bake about 10 minutes, then flip and continue baking another 8-10 minutes, or until nicely browned.














 Meanwhile, allow a few minutes for the vaccum dog to clean up spilled ingredients before continuing.














While "crab" cakes are baking, place mayonnaise, lime juice, roasted pepper and chipotle in a 1 quart mixing bowl (you want the bowl larger than you think you need so the immersion blender doesn't splatter the sauce all over your feet).















Puree using an immersion blender.  Hopefully your sauce will be a more appetizingly red than mine. :P














Artistically spoon some of the red pepper sauce on 4 plates.  Place 2 "crab" cakes on sauce.  If you forget to flip over the cakes, drizzle some more sauce over them to unsuccessfully hide the lack of browning.  Serve with a salad, or just a couple of slices of tomato if the bag o'salad you purchased last week started to self-compost.

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