Jul 4, 2010

crab(less)cakes with fried corn salad

Tamasin Noyen, author of American Vegan Kitchen, over at Vegan Appetite, holds these really neat convert-a-Food-Network-recipe-to-vegan affairs. It is a lot of fun and anyone who is game is invited by her to join in. All you have to do is convert the assigned recipe to vegan - with your own spin, if you wish. This time around yours truly was asked to choose the destined recipe - not as easy as it sounds - and my pick was Paula Deen's Crabcakes. I chose this because it is open for interpretation (as Tami said) and there has not been a recipe of Paula's picked, yet. 

I made Tami's 'Fried Corn Salad' (out of her cookbook) to accompany the cakes; very appropriate since they are both American. I also made a Horseradish-Tartar sauce to go with my cakes. I didn't want to do an old-stand-by-tartar and I knew that cocktail sauce would be too overpowering for the delicate flavor of my cakes, so I mixed the two ideas.

The 'crab' I made using extra firm tofu, shredded, that I simmered with Old Bay, seaweed (to invite the sea and a whole bunch of nutrients to the festivities) and onions. I let it cool in the fridge overnight with some sauteed green peppers, red peppers and garlic. I used fresh cashew cream infused with garlic and rosemary to bind the cakes, as well as ground panko, and dredged them in crushed saltines. I only used a few teaspoons of olive oil to pan-fry my cakes - not the tons of oil that most recipes call for.

The cakes emerged from the whole experience tender and flaky, slightly sweet and salty with a crispy crust and a mild sea-flavor infused by the use of seaweed. 

Verdict: I did not have enough for the kids and David. It was so delicious and really quite easy to make - if you subtract the experimental phase!

Cost Breakdown:
tofu: $1.50
vegetables: $1
crackers and panko: $.50
cashews: $.75
seasonings and oil: $.50
corn salad: $2 
horseradish-tartar sauce: $.50
Total to make appetizers for 12:



  1. I love how crispy they turned out. Good pick. I am hoping I have time to do my version this week. Yummy.

  2. I hope you get to make this!! I want to see your take on it - you are so creative that it would be a loss if you didn't have the time!

    It did turn out very crispy, thanks; my taste-testers loved it (a.k.a. my family :)

  3. Wow...I am impressed with vegan crabcakes because I have never thought this would turn out well vegan. I can't wait to give these a try this week. Thanks for the recipe.

  4. Thank you, Tender Branson! There is a minimal amount of crumbs in the mixture themselves to keep them flaky, so to make sure they do hold their shape just be firm forming the cakes but do not squish them too much.

    Have fun and good eats!

  5. We had these for lunch, just the two of us. Two each. That leaves enough left over for tomorrow!!!
    Yummm. Seems like a lot of work when you read the instructions, but they really goes together easily.
    And do pay attention to the cashew milk, it thickens almost immediately.

  6. I am so pleased that it went together as it was supposed to. I do hope you liked it! Thank you so much for giving me feedback - it is good to know whether or not I am explaining the recipes correctly.


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