Greetings my dear Gothlings!
As some of you may or may not know about me at the moment is that I am shedding an amazing amount of pounds, once again, due to my strong commitment to a no carb/low carb diet...kind of a mix between Atikins & South Beach Diet with some Mediterranean diet thrown into the mix. My only weaknesses & cheats are Pizza & Wine...but other than that, I like to challenge myself with innovative no/low carb recipes that I find on the InterWebs to experiment with (heads up: chickpea flour pizza crust and sugar-free pizza sauce coming soon!!!).
With that established, I was scratching my head as to figure out what to cook at me Mum's house for Mum's Day this past weekend. I soon remembered that one of me mum's favorite dishes of all time is Crab Cakes! Perfect!!! Except for the fact that crab cakes are always always typically made with carb (and gluten) packed breadcrumbs!!!
So I scoured the web and went through a bunch of low carb recipe websites and settled on the one provided by stepawayfromthecarbs.com which offers pork rinds as an alternative to breadcrumbs as a caking agent. Well this peaked my interest and I decided to go with this...and the results were AMAZING!!! Here is my experience with this recipe and how I made it...
(I must warn you here that I slightly veered away from the original recipe, namely because the can of crab meat was 16oz instead of the 8oz so I doubled everything! I will explain as I go along...)
First, eight (8) simple and healthy ingredients:
- Vegetable oil (NEVER EVER EVAAAAARRR cook or fry with olive oil. EVER!!!)
- 2 medium zucchini - grated or finely chopped (use the big holes on a cheese grater)
- 6 green onions/scallions - finely chopped
- 2 eggs
- 2 Tablespoons of Dijon (French!) mustard
- 1 cup (or a tad more) of crushed pork rinds
- 1 teaspoon of lemon-pepper seasoning
- 16oz of crab meat
Ok...let me start you off with a few helpful hints...especially for the crab meat itself. Crab Meat is friggin' expensive!!! I found the Chicken of the Sea brand at the supermarket and depending on what type of crab style you choose from it could run you from $19.99 to $27.95 per can!!! I chose the middle one called "Special" (why is it special? I dunno.). Stay away from "Claw" (cheap) and "Lump" (super pricey). The "Special" style was the perfect consistency for this recipe! Next, you may have noticed my note about cooking with olive oil? Yeah...well...that, again! I will explain this in my upcoming and highly anticipated new Vlog series, The Cranky Restauranteur.
Ok...here goes! Start off by grating the two medium zucchinis into a bowl and then finely chop the white and firm green parts of the scallions, and dump into the same bowl. Get a large skillet and put in 2 tablespoons of your oil and sauté your zucchini/scallion mix on medium-high heat for about 5 minutes or until rather tender. Remove this from the skillet and put it on a plate off to the side to cool down.
While you are waiting for that to cool down, grab a large ziplock bag and dump in about four big handfuls of pork rings into it, seal it up, and start pounding it on the table to let out somefrustrations and repressed anger until you get a fine breadcrumbs consistency. Measure out about a cup of the pulverized pork rinds...a bit more is better than a bit less.
Now for your mixture...In a large bowl crack open the two eggs and dump in the egg innards. Take a whisk and beat them into submission. Then add your mustard, lemon/pepper seasoning, pork rinds, and crab meat. Mix well.
Find your cooled plate of zucchini & scallions and take a few layers of paper towels to press down on it to absorb any excess moisture...this might take a few tries. Then take notice of the funky green art left on your paper towels. Next, add the greens to your mixture in the large bowl and mix very thoroughly!
Now you have a bowl of this stinky green and white mush. Great! You are done with the prep work! Now to start cookin'!!!
Take your skillet from before and add a bunch of vegetable oil until you get at least a healthy half of an inch of oil pooled in the skillet. Set your flame to high, but make sure not to overheat -- if you have any remaining zucchini/scallion bits remaining in there and you start to hear them sizzling, then you are good to go!
Wash your dirty paws and go to your mixture and start making the crabby patties (Spongebob Squarepants not included) by grabbing a handful of the stuff and continuously cupping it like you would do when making a hamburger patty. Be sure that it feels firm enough to hold together...not too wet/not too dry...not too thick/not too thin. The recipe that I modified created 6 patties that were just about an inch and a half thick and the size of a large cookie...but I think that you can properly squeeze out about eight of these if portioned right.
Next, when your oil is nice and hot, you are going to grab your (plastic/silicon - not metal) spatula and carefully place a few of the patties in the oil and let them fry for about 5 minutes until golden brown on the underside. After 5 minutes, very carefully flip them over and let brown for another 5 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare a large plate to the side and place two or three layers of paper towels on it...this will be your de-greasing station.
After the ten minute cooking time is done, carefully remove your crab cakes and place them on the paper towels and let them sit while you go and repeat the next batch in the skillet.
Once all of your crab cakes are cooked to perfection, simply transfer to plates and accompany them with either Tartar Sauce, Cocktail Sauce, lemon juice, or the blood and tears of your fallen enemies! ENJOY!!!
See you in the Dark!
Sir William Welles