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Crab & potato cakes with mustard & cumin Recipe

Written on Sunday, July 24, 2016 | 1:04:00 PM



Serves : 3 – 4 servings 

Ingredients : 
1)  EXTRA VIRGIN RAPESEED OIL 4 tablespoons

2)  BLACK MUSTARD SEEDS ½ teaspoon

3)  WHITE LENTILS (URAD DAAL) OR YELLOW SPLIT PEAS (CHANNA DAAL) 1 heaped teaspoon

4)  CUMIN SEEDS ½ teaspoon

5)  CHOPPED FRESH ROOT GINGER 1 tablespoon

6)  CHOPPED FRESH GREEN CHILLI 1 tablespoon

7)  RED SHALLOTS 6, or 2 small red onions, finely chopped

8)  FRESHLY GRATED COCONUT 2 tablespoons, or 1 heaped tablespoon desiccated coconut soaked in enough warm water to just cover for 30 minutes

9)  DICED TOMATO 1 tablespoon

10)  WHITE CRABMEAT 250–300g (9–10½oz)

11)  BROWN CRABMEAT 1–2 tablespoons

12)  CHOPPED FRESH CORIANDER 1 heaped tablespoon

13)  FLOURY POTATOES 3 large, roughly cubed

14)  CURRY LEAVES 12–14, preferably fresh, shredded; if using dried, soak in water for 10–12 minutes, and dry thoroughly before shredding (optional)

15)  EGGS 3–4

16)  PLAIN FLOUR for dusting

17)  RICE FLOUR, MEDIUM SEMOLINA OR WHITE BREADCRUMBS 200g (7oz)

18)  SALT AND FRESHLY GROUND BLACK PEPPER

19)  SPICED MAYONNAISE, garnished with red chilli powder, to serve


Preparation Method :

- Prepare and set out all your ingredients in the order listed.

- Heat half the oil in a wok until nearly at smoking point, then reduce the heat to medium. Add the mustard seeds and hold a lid loosely above them so that they don’t go all over the place when they crackle and pop. The moment you get a nutty aroma and the popping reduces, add the lentils. Stir, watching until they change colour slightly, then immediately add the cumin seeds. Continue heating and stirring until the lentils turn a little brown, but do not let them burn.

- Add the ginger, chilli and shallots, and sauté until the shallots become soft and pale. Mix in the coconut and sauté for 2–3 minutes, stirring with a wooden spatula to prevent sticking. The idea is to drive off some of the moisture and lightly toast the coconut.

- Lightly stir in the tomato, then add the crabmeats, stirring until heated through. Add the coriander and salt to taste. Transfer to a dish and set aside to cool.

- Meanwhile, bring a large pan of water to the boil. When boiling, add some salt and the potatoes, and cook for about 8–10 minutes, until tender. Drain well, then return the potatoes to the pan and place them over a low heat, stirring with a wooden spatula from the bottom up until they look dry, slightly crushed and fluffy. Pass through a ricer or mash with a potato masher until free of lumps. Season with salt, pepper and the curry leaves, if using. Set aside to cool.

- There are 2 ways to make the crab cakes. The first is to mix the potato and crab mixture together, then form it into small patties of whatever size you like. The second is the Indian way, which is to roll the mashed potato into balls of the preferred size, flatten them in the palm of your hand, add a tablespoon of the crab mixture, then carefully envelop in the potato. Whichever method you use, make sure the cakes are smooth and free of cracks before the next step.

- Beat the eggs in a shallow bowl until fully combined. Place the plain flour in a second bowl and the rice flour, semolina or breadcrumbs in a third. Taking one cake at a time, dip it first in the egg, then in the second bowl and finally in the third.

- Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a frying pan. When hot, fry the cakes on each side until brown. Drain on kitchen paper and serve with Spiced Mayonnaise.




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