About Those Crabcakes

It is no secret that a few times a year B and I bust out the “fancy” cookbooks and make what we call a Celebration Meal. Previous Celebration Meals have included sea scallops, various (delicious) cuts of beef and potatoes lovingly made into a creamy, goat cheese wonder. Last year I poked fun at B, for choosing a February 14th menu that included ingredients such as “chive oil” (that I had to make), “parsley water” (again, had to be made) and clarified butter (which they sell, but alas, we made it). I declared that next year I was choosing the recipes, and choose I did. Crabcakes and potato hash ala Thomas Keller & spinach Rockefeller ala Galatoires with carrot cake cupcakes for dessert (ala Pioneer Woman). So simple! So easy! Potatoes! Spinach! Crab!


I should have known better.

Thomas Keller’s recipes, while divine (and worth making, don’t get me wrong) have the small issue of having single ingredients that are an entire recipe unto themselves. Oh, the crabcakes recipe is so simple until you realize, oh, heyo, that aioli is its own recipe that requires an ingredient that I need to order from Amazon, and the potato hash includes melted onions which, oh look at that, take an hour all by themselves (and one of the ingredients within the melted onions is a whole other recipe AGAIN, I’m looking at you “sachet”), and spinach Rockefeller requires, I kid you not, one million ingredients, give or take, including Herbsaint. (We substituted Pernod.)


As my friend Cheesefiend said, sometimes you inexplicably find yourself with a roux that has turned into cement that is congealed in your eyebrows as you frantically search for the button to turn the vent on as it all burns.

Or sometimes you find yourself forming crabcake after crabcake and after watching all of them fall apart and crying into the bowl of (expensive) crab and wondering why it won’t just STICK TOGETHER DAMNIT. At this point your husband quietly suggests, as he surveys the scene of 8 sauce pans and various baking sheets and the food processor being used and reused that maybe, just this once, we go by the McDonald’s Rule and order pizza.


When he realized that no, I was not letting this crab go without a fight, he disappeared and came back 10 minutes later with a list of all the tips he found On The Internet for making crabcakes stick. He found me staring sheepishly into the bowl.

I forgot the eggs…. I admitted.

He raised an eyebrow.

You mean the glue? he asked quietly.

Pretty much.

And with that I beat some eggs and poured them into the crab mixture while wiping my cheeks with the back of my Panko covered hands.

I know you would be surprised to learn that this is when he decided it was time to open the wine.

The meal was delicious….and we ate at 8:30 pm, a mere two and a half hours after beginning our journey. But those crabcakes stuck together. And I’ll be a monkey’s uncle if those melted onions were not amazing.

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2 Responses to About Those Crabcakes

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  • Lindsay says:

    SO TRUE! My boyfriend was set on making New England clam chowder as one of the dishes for our Super Bowl party, and after he made me dump an entire box of kosher salt in water just to “wash” the clams and made me run out for cheesecloth to make a sachet for said clams, I finally asked where the recipe came from. “Thomas Keller.” Yeah, it was pretty much the best clam chowder ever. But man, it took a lot of preparation! Glad it worked out for you in the end!

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