Monday, September 10, 2012

Healthy Crab Cakes with Creamy Avocado Sauce and Organic Spring Mix Salad

So what makes these crab cakes healthy? There's a lot less stuffing and a lot more crab. I always get annoyed when I order crab cakes at a restaurant and they come out filled with loads of bread crumbs. Yes they are usually delicious because they are friend and doughy, but I find myself asking "Where's the meat?" These crab cakes are baked and very light. I served this with an avocado cream sauce and a spring mix salad on the side. You can serve this to little one's 2+ years old (I say 2+ years because of shellfish allergies. Even though crabs are not shellfish they are lumped in with the shellfish allergy. Remember to always ask your pediatrician if it is safe for your child to eat shellfish. For more information on safe seafood for kids check out Kid Safe Seafood.)

Here's what you need for 4 to 6 servings:
1 lb jumbo lump crab, picked over for shells
3 tbsp low fat mayonaisse
1/4 cup minced fresh chives or scallions
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp dijon mustard
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
1 tbsp unsalted butter
2 garlic cloves, smashed
1/2 tsp Herbs de Provence
1/4 tsp salt

For the Avocado Cream Sauce:
1/2 ripe medium California avocado, pitted and peeled
1 tbsp low fat mayonaisse
1 tbsp fresh lime juice
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp sugar
1/4 cup skim milk

Preheat oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet with foil.

For the sauce: Put avocado, mayo, lime juice, salt and sugar into a food processor and blend. Add milk and blend until smooth. Put in a bowl, cover and chill.

For the crab cakes: Stir together crabmeat, mayo, chives, lemon juice, mustard, pepper, and 1 tbsp panko in a large bowl until well blended. Cover and put in the refrigerator to chill. In the meantime, melt butter in a medium nonstick skillet over medium high heat, then add smashed garlic. Cook until golden and fragrant (about 2 minutes). Add Herbs de Provence, salt and remaining panko and cook stirring until golden brown, about 6 minutes. Transfer to a plate to cool. Discard garlic. Divide crab meat into mounds (I was able to make 8 medium sized mounds). Form each mound into a patty and then carefully turn patty in panko mixture to coat the top and bottom. Transfer to a baking sheet and repeat with each patty, then sprinkle remaining panko mixture on top of the crab cakes. Bake until heated through, about 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool and serve crab cakes with a dollop of avocado sauce. Enjoy!

Organic Spring Mix Salad:
1 package organic spring mix salad

French Vinaigrette
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp coarsely chopped shallot
2 tsp dijon mustard
1/2 tsp salt
freshly ground black pepper to taste
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

Puree all ingredients except the oil in a blender or food processor or with handheld immersion blender. With the machine running, pour the olive oil in a steady stream. If you are not going to you the dressing  within a few hours, store it tightly covered in the refrigerator. It will keep for several weeks. Bring it to room temperature and shake or whisk well before you pour it on the salad. I used about 2 1/2 tbsp total for the whole salad. This salad was just for Mommy and Daddy :)

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