New Year’s Day: Crab Cakes

I always feel that New Year’s Day calls for something special to eat, something that you wouldn’t normally indulge in on a normal day.  Growing up, we ALWAYS had shrimp cocktail.  I still love shrimp cocktail, but was feeling like I should try something new.  I was browsing through the seafood section at Whole Foods the other day, looking for inspiration, and came across some fresh crab meat.  Crab cakes!  Done.  Something I’ve never made before, and the perfect occasion.  These actually turned out really nice.  My husband is still raving about them this morning – good thing we have some leftovers to enjoy!

Crab Cakes, makes 12 3-ounce cakes

(adapted from the Cuisinart recipe booklet that came with my food processor)

1 lb lump crab meat

1 garlic clove

1 red bell pepper, cut into 2-inch pieces

3 green onions, cut into 1-inch pieces

½ cup parsley

1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil

¼ tsp kosher salt

¼ tsp freshly ground pepper

2 large eggs, slightly beaten

1 cup bread crumbs

½ cup mayonnaise

1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1 ½ tsp Old Bay seasoning

2 tsp Dijon mustard

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Coat a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray, or a silicon mat.

Drop the garlic into the bowl of a food processor, while running, to chop.  Add the peppers, green onion and parsley and pulse to coarsely chop, about 10 to 12 pulses.

Put the oil into a large skillet placed over medium heat.  Cook chopped vegetables with salt and pepper until soft, about 5 to 7 minutes.  Remove and reserve in a large mixing bowl.

Once vegetables have cooled slightly, add the crab, eggs, breadcrumbs, mayonnaise, Worcestershire, Old Bay, and Dijon.  Mix thoroughly but carefully, so not to break up the crab too much.  Form mixture into 2-inch round cakes.

Place on prepared baking sheet and bake until crabcakes are evenly golden, about 15 to 20 minutes.  Serve with hot sauce and lemon wedges.

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