You know those meals that get a hold of you and won’t let go? There’s some thing about the flavor, the texture, the simplicity… last night, that meal was Crab Cakes.
I know. I live in the Midwest. Seafood is a little bit sketchy in these parts. Everything is frozen, shipped, thawed, and glared at under florescent meat market lighting. And you know the worst offender of “seafood”? Imitation crab. Really. What the heck is surimi? How is it processed? What is that funny pink color on the outside?
Forgive me, but I don’t care. Whenever I have the chance to swing by a Byerly’s, their imitation crab legs are one of the first things I pick up. I was assured that they were made in house, which I don’t really know what to think about, but the texture is firmer, the flavor is more meaty and less sweet, and they are generally under $5 for a package.
So, crab cakes hit the menu last night. I don’t really have a defined recipe for these, so what follows is a loose set of ideas. If you think you need more crumbs, more egg, more anything, go for it. Honestly, you really can’t screw these up too badly. The ingredients are simple and bright, and the whole meal comes together in about 15 minutes. Seriously. If you’re in a rut and need a new idea for this weekend, give these little guys a go. I promise they are worth it.
1 package of imitation crab legs (I prefer the kind from Byerly’s.)
- 1 cup Panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
1 tbsp chopped fresh dill (or cilantro if you’d prefer)
3 green onion spears
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp dijon mustard
Sea salt/fresh cracked black pepper
1. Shred the crab in a medium mixing bowl
2. Add the panko, dill, green onions, salt, and pepper. Mix.
3. In a separate bowl, mix the dijon mustard, egg, and lemon juice till combined.
4. Pour the sauce over the crab and crumbs. Mix again.
5. Heat a large skillet with two tbsp. vegetable oil
6. With your hands, take a biscuit sized patty of crab and press it together.
7. Place in the pan. Cook on medium high heat until crispy and brown, roughly 4 minutes per side.
8. Serve over whatever greens you have on hand. I prefer spinach and arugula.
9. If you’re a sauce person, grab another mixing bowl, and add Miracle Whip, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Whisk together, pour over the top. If you’re feeling lazy, a dollop of miracle whip on the side of your plate to dip the crab cakes in will accomplish similar results.