Friday, November 27, 2009

Wine Society: Crab Cakes with Cilantro Lime Sauce and Parmesan Herbed Shortbread

crab cakes 103

Hope all had a happy Thanksgiving.  My favorite part is when we go around the table and say what we’re thankful for.  This year (again!) I am thankful for my family; my loving husband and children, and good health enjoyed by all.

The holidays have a way of distorting time.  It seems ages ago that we had wine society but really, it was just last weekend and I continue the recipes for the fabulous meal we enjoyed at Victor Alexander’s tasting room.

That memorable meal started with crab cakes.  Moist and delicious, bursting with crab and sautéed veggies with just a hint of Old Bay seasoning.  The big taste twist came with the lime cilantro ginger sauce.  Sweet, then hot , then a cool burst of ginger;  layers of flavor, easy to make and versatile.  I used the leftovers for a sparkling cocktail I’ve yet to name.

This course was served with VA Semillon a light and fruity wine and parmesan herb shortbread.  Buttery, flecked with fresh herbs with a satisfying squeak against your teeth crunch.  These would go well with just about anything and a great replacement for cheese straws which often make their way to holiday tables (and cost a lot).wine society nov 059

This weekend kicks off the holidays.  We’ll hang our wreaths and set up the snowy village with the live ice skaters that E can’t keep her hands off.  We’ll take advantage of this lovely weather to wrap our outdoor trees in white lights.  Tomorrow we’ll bundle up for the tree lighting ceremony at city hall and sip hot chocolate at the newly remodeled Pegasus coffee house.  Before we head home for bed, we’ll stroll the boardwalk looking for boats adorned in holiday lights.  Bring on the canned holiday jingles!

But hey!  Before I forget… shop the Indie Banditas Bazaar today and tomorrow at Woodward Middle School.  I’ve vowed to make or buy local as many gifts as possible and the indie bazaar is a great place to start. 


Crab cakes

From:  Barefoot Contessa

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 tablespoons olive oil

¾ cup small-diced red onion (1 small onion)

1 ½ cup small-diced celery (4 stalks)

½ cup small-diced red bell pepper (1 small pepper)

½ cup small-diced yellow bell pepper (1 small pepper)

½ cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley

1 tablespoon capers, drained

¼ teaspoon Tabasco sauce

½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1 ½ teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning

½ teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

½ pound lump crabmeat

½ cup plain dry bread crumbs

½ cup mayonnaise

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

2 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten

Place the 2 tablespoons butter, 2 tablespoons olive oil, onion, celery, red and yellow bell peppers, parsley, capers, Tabasco sauce, Worcestershire sauce, Old Bay Seasoning, salt, and pepper in a large sauté pan over med-low heat and cook until the veggies are soft, approximately 15 to 20 minutes. Cool to room temperature. In a large bowl, break the lump crabmeat into small pieces and toss with the bread crumbs, mayonnaise, mustard, and eggs. Add the cooked mixture and mix well. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Shape into bite-sized crab cakes.

Heat the butter and olive oil for frying over medium heat in a large sauté pan. Add the crab cakes and fry for 4 to 5 minutes on each side, until browned. Drain on paper towels; keep them warm in a 250-degree oven and serve hot.

Parmesan & Thyme Crackers

From: Barefoot Contessa by Ina Garten

¼ pound (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

4 ounces freshly grated parmesan cheese (about 1 cup)

1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme leaves

½ teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter for 1 minute. With the mixer on low speed, add the Parmesan, thyme, salt, and pepper and combine. With the mixer still on low, add the flour and combine until the mixture is in large crumbles, about 1 minute. If the dough is too dry, add 1 teaspoon water.

Dump the dough onto a floured board, press it into a ball, and roll into a 9-inch log. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or for up to 4 days.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the log into 3/8-inch-thick rounds with a small, sharp knife and place them on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. Bake for 22 minutes, until very lightly browned. Rotate the pan once during baking. Cool and serve at room temperature.


sandraj said...

You are up and about early. The crab cakes look good. Shortbread is good too.

El said...

I love crab cakes. Thanks for the recipe!