Happy new year, everyone... 2013, wow, another year, another beginning! I am feeling a bit weird this year, because, to be honest, I have no idea where the last year went. It feels like only yesterday life was all organised and stable and suddenly, its upside down again.
2012 has been a year of ups and downs in many ways. It was the year Aditi started kindergarten, or big girl school, as we call it, that I started working full time for Get Cooking, finally channelling my passion for food into something more tangible and a career. I made good friends in Edmonton that I feel confident that I can turn to when life gets tough, and got my life into shape. I was lucky enough to be invited to events here, and also contributed to several e-zines and recipe books. I became more confident in my cooking, and Food, Football and a Baby, a small personal blog, turned into The Tiffin Box, which is so much more reflective of my life now.
The downside was all those awful world events that took a toll on all our lives. Kay and I were really affected by the Newtown tragedy, especially as our baby girl is the same age as those beautiful kids who were senselessly killed. We cried with all the parents, and we couldn't even watch some of the coverage for fear of breaking down. I rarely talk politics on this blog, preferring to keep it simple, but this tragedy made me question a lot of things in life, and get more involved in making a difference.
Which brings me to new years resolutions of course... those pesky things.
I rarely keep resolutions... I remember, as a kid, every year my resolutions went something along the lines of 'be a good girl and help mummy in the kitchen everyday'... which, incidentally I broke within a couple days of the year turning. Every year I make a resolution, and without fail, every year I break it. Last year's was to head to the gym and work out... er, what? I am a food blogger, I am... ain't going to lose no weight me...
This year I think I am going to keep it simple, and just aim to be happy. No being supermom, or superanyone... just be myself and be happy with everything that I have. I am lucky enough to have a life that I love and enjoy, and its time I stopped wanting and started enjoying. That should be simple enough, eh?
These crab cakes were made delicious leftover crab from our Christmas dinner. One of the things I miss hugely from my Indian days is fresh crab. I love crab and my mum's crab pepper fry is one that I dream of every day. This crab came from the Portland Canal near Stewart BC, where my sister-in-law's father fishes.Kay and I try to get up there every summer, and one of my fondest memories was our fishing and crabbing trip just before our wedding. We caught so much crab! Check out these pictures, if you think I am exaggerating :)
This year I was lucky enough to be given a big bag of crab legs, and I saved them jealously until Christmas when there wasn't any reason not to open them. I made my sister-in-law's father's crab dip recipe for appetizers, and that went down a treat, and as an even more special treat, I kept aside some crabmeat to make these cakes. I didn't really follow a specific recipe, it was more of 'throw in a bit of this and more of that' kind of cooking. The cakes were absolutely gorgeus, and as soon as I tasted one, I knew I just had to blog the recipe, so I whipped out my camera, did a quick bit of styling, and voila! the perfect, light lunch with a glass of chilled white! (and yes, everyone in the house groaned as soon as I announced my decision to photograph these... heathens :))
This recipe makes 8 generous sized cakes, make them a little smaller if you are serving these as canapes.
6 oz crabmeat, with chunks, if possible
1 cup breadcrumbs, divided (I used fresh)
1 tablespoon all purpose flour
2 green onions, finely chopped
½ tablespoon finely chopped dill
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 teaspoon mustard
Pinch of sweet paprika
1 medium egg, beaten
Salt and pepper to taste
Unscented oil, to shallow fry
Pick over the crab meat, if using fresh, and remove any traces of shells or cartilage. If using tinned crabmeat, drain for in a sieve.
In a large bowl, place ½ cup breadcrumbs, finely chopped green onions and dill, mayonnaise, mustard and paprika. Stir together well, and season with a little salt and pepper.
Gently fold in the crab. Add the egg, little by little, until you get a firm-ish mixture that you can shape into little cakes. Taste and adjust seasoning.
Shape the mixture into little balls, then flatten slightly to make cakes. This amount of mixture should make about 8 good sized crab cakes. Chill the cakes for about an hour, to firm up *see notes.
Place the remaining ½ cup breadcrumbs on a large plate and sprinkle over the flour. Using your fingers, mix together the flour and breadcrumbs, with a little extra black pepper till you have a dry flour-crumb mixture.
Heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan.
Dredge the crab cakes in this flour-breadcrumb mixture and gently place in the hot oil. Fry, about 2 – 3 minutes on each side, being very careful while flipping over, or until the crab cakes are a golden brown.
Serve with a lightly dressed salad and lemon wedges, and extra mayonnaise or tartar sauce, if desired.