Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Wind Chime Café Recipe ~ Maryland Crab Cakes



As many of you know, I grew up on the Eastern Shore of Maryland and I'm working on a new trilogy set on the Chesapeake Bay. The first book, Wind Chime Café, centers around a quirky island café and explores the complex seafood culture of the region. Of course, after deciding to write a book that would include some of my favorite recipes, I realized I should probably learn how to cook them!

Over the next few weeks, I'll be taking you along on my journey to learn how to cook some authentic Chesapeake Bay recipes, including baked rockfish, oyster fritters, crab dip, and possibly a nine-layer Smith Island cake. But let's start off with everyone's favorite--the Maryland crab cake!

What you'll need:
1/2 c. chopped fresh basil
1 slice of sourdough or plain white bread with the crust removed, pinched into tiny pieces
1 lb backfin crab meat
3/4 c. mayo
3/4 t dry mustard
2 t Old Bay Seasoning
1 egg
juice of half a lemon
salt and pepper
 
Toss everything in a big bowl and mix together.
Form into balls using an ice cream scoop and drop heaping scoops onto a platter.
Sprinkle more Old Bay Seasoning on the top. Be generous!
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour. (This isn't crucial, but it helps keep the cakes together.)


When you're ready to cook, heat up about 1/4 inch of cooking oil in a large pan (until it sizzles when you throw a few drops of water in) and fry the crab cakes on both sides until golden brown. Serve hot with cocktail sauce and lemon wedges, and fresh corn on the cob and a salad.
 
 
If you get a chance to try my family's crab cake recipe, I'd love to hear what you think! I'm really looking forward to incorporating some Chesapeake Bay recipes into Wind Chime Café. I've always loved reading books about food and cooking. Some of my favorites are Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel,  Bread Alone by Judith Ryan Hendricks, and Chocolat by Joanne Harris. What are some of your favorite novels that involve cooking and recipes?

*The top photo is of an original Chesapeake Bay working skipjack. There are only a few dozen of these boats left.

14 comments:

  1. Oh yum! I cannot wait to try this out. I've been looking for a good crab cake recipe!!

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    1. Thanks so much for popping by, Lillie! I hope you like the recipe. :)

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  2. SO gorgeous and I can only imagine how delicious!!!

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  3. I don't do much with seafood, but after seeing this I need to try!

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    1. I would have thought you ate lots of seafood in the UK ~ the land of fish and chips! :)

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  4. Ooohh, I am so excited to try this. I just came home from the Market and bought King Crab legs~ Crab Cake recipe is going in my file! And Whoo hoo a new trilogy :)

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    1. Oh, yum! King crab legs... I haven't had those in ages. I used to love going to the all you can eat buffet in Ocean City and getting them dipped in butter. Not great for the beach body, but so delicious!

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  5. Adding basil to crabcakes is absolutely brilliant!

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    1. Thx, Chris! The traditional recipe uses parsley, but we love our basil. :)

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  6. This sounds like so much fun and what a great blog idea. We love to cook and seafood is one of our favorites—especially crab cakes! We can't wait to try your version and we hope you end up posting that cake recipe as well ;) Looking forward to your new series!

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    1. Thanks so much! Yes, the cake is in high demand. I've been running into people in the grocery store and Target all week, stopping me and saying, can I come over when you bake the Smith Island cake? LOL It's going to be an adventure. It's supposed to take all day!

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  7. Whenever I hear about Chesapeake Bay, those luscious crab cakes are the first thing that comes to my mind. While there might be other places that brag about great crab cakes, the ones they make at Chesapeake Bay always leaves me craving for more. Speaking of which, I'm due for another visit. Haha! Anyway, thanks for sharing!

    Megan Anderson @ Café Fina

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