Maryland-Style Crab Cakes

What’s Cooking in Gail’s Kitchen? Palatable Possibilities: Maryland-Style Crab Cakes! When my step-daughter, Brandi, gifted me with a copy of one of her favorite seafood cookbooks, I knew exactly what dish I was going to make first. After all, the cookbook is based on a popular Hilton Head Island restaurant that has become her family’s traditional spot whenever they visit. Because Florida has an abundance of connections for fresh seafood, vendors are able to get premium, wild-caught crab meat to sell to their customers. Farmers Markets, as well as fish companies specialize in pre-made crab cakes. One taste and I thought, why compete with the best? So, I use two or three resources for incredible tasting Maryland crab cakes. Supporting local businesses builds strong communities and helps everyone thrive. For dinner in a snap, read on.

MARYLAND-STYLE CRAB CAKES

Ingredients:

6 pre-made Maryland crab cakes

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons red onion, diced

1 garlic clove, minced

1 cup diced tomatoes

1 cup spicy Bloody Mary mix

1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Lemon slices, for garnish

Parsley flakes, for garnish

Instructions:

To make the gazpacho sauce, warm olive oil in a sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add red onion and minced garlic. Cook 1-2 minutes. Add diced tomatoes, Bloody Mary mix, Worcestershire sauce, sea salt, and black pepper. Stir to combine. Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes. Transfer gazpacho to a bowl. Refrigerate until ready to use. To bake the crab cakes, preheat oven to 425°. Place crab cakes on a baking sheet that has been sprayed with nonstick oil. Bake 12 minutes, flip, and bake 3 minutes longer until golden brown. To serve, ladle the slightly chilled gazpacho onto a plate; center a crab cake on top. Arrange lemon slices. Sprinkle with parsley flakes.

Crunchy Crab Cakes

What’s Cooking in Gail’s Kitchen? Palatable Possibilities: Crunchy Crab Cakes! Get ready for a celebration meal by simply serving crab cakes. You’re going to want to savor every bite, so try really hard to chew your food 20 times before taking another forkful. The outer layer is crispy crunchy, which works well for serving with a homemade jezebel sauce, creamy horseradish, or Caesar dressing. Personally, I prefer a bed of romaine lettuce, cherry tomatoes, and green onions simply because it intensifies the sweet lump crabmeat filling that much more. Pour yourself a glass of chilled Chardonnay, bubbly Prosecco, or Pinot Blanc. Now let’s get this party started.

CRUNCHY CRAB CAKES

Ingredients:

1 large egg, beaten

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1 teaspoon soy sauce

1/2 teaspoon sriracha

1/2 teaspoon Cajun seasoning

1 cup red bell pepper, chopped

1/4 cup green onions, finely chopped

16-ounce can lump crabmeat, rinsed and drained

1 cup panko breadcrumbs

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 425°. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick oil. Set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together beaten egg, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, mayonnaise, soy sauce, sriracha, and Cajun seasoning. Add chopped red pepper and green onions. Fold in crabmeat and 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs. Place remaining breadcrumbs on a sheet of waxed paper. Sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper. Divide crab mixture into fourths. Shape each portion into a patty. Coats both sides in the panko bread crumbs. Place crab cake on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat process with the remaining mixture. Bake 10-12 minutes, or until crab cakes are crispy on the bottom. Flip over and bake 10-12 minutes longer or until golden brown and crispy. Serve immediately.

Heart-Healthy Honey Cakes

What’s Cooking in Gail’s Kitchen? Elevated Edibles: Heart-Healthy Honey Cakes! Way down south, in the Florida panhandle, grows an unusual tree that produces the “Cadillac” of all honey varieties known as raw Tupelo. The tree blossoms are short-lived and delicate, creating a nectar that is nothing short of superbly exquisite. The finespun flavor is buttery, highly distinctive, and almost magical. If you happen to put your hands on a jar of Tupelo honey, first unscrew the lid and place a couple droplets on your tongue. You owe yourself a genuine taste of the liquid amber gold before adding it to your culinary portfolio. Then, by all means, elevate everyday favorites.

HEART-HEALTHY HONEY CAKES

Ingredients:

1 cup flour plus 2 tablespoons

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1/3 cup Tupelo raw honey, reserving 1 1/2 tablespoons for drizzling over the batter

1/2 cup sugar

2 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/3 cup coffee

2 1/2 tablespoons orange juice

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350°. Generously grease six mini bundt pans with nonstick oil. Set aside. In a bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and sea salt. Mix well. Add vegetable oil, raw honey, sugar, brown sugar, egg, vanilla extract, coffee, and orange juice. Mix thoroughly until no lumps remain. Pour batter into prepared mini bundt pans, filling each just over halfway. Do not overfill. Drizzle reserved raw honey over batter. Bake 30 minutes, or until cake tester comes out clean. Remove from oven. Cool 10 minutes, then invert pans to remove honey cakes. Cool on wire rack. Garnish with fresh lemon thyme.

Carlo’s Bakery in New York, New York

Dining Outside the Home: Carlo’s Bakery in New York, New York! He’s the Boss, that’s for sure. Luscious cakes, cream-filled cannolis, chewy cookies, and countless culinary creations will have your head swimming from refrigerated display case to bakery case. Customers in line murmur, “I want this. I’ve had that” as their fingers point to the delicious pastries behind the lighted glass. In no time at all, by the time you snake your way up to the energetic staff, you’ll easily walk away clutching fifty dollars worthy of dreamy confections.