It’s a ‘Shroomin’ Kind of Day

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We are without children for a couple of days — they get a vacation without parents but with the Grandparents. So we had ‘adult food’ tonight. The kind you make and know no one will turn up their nose and say “Eewwww, what is *this*?” It’s good to have a couple of those days in a year.

Since I am without an oven still, I grilled tonight. We had burgers, but not quite like the Husband’s favorites (which involve green chile). I mixed about 1/2 pound of ground beef with some chopped onion, a couple tablespoons of raspberry chipoltle salsa, a sprinkle of bread crumbs, and an egg and made those into patties. When they were nearly done, I topped them with cheese, a slice of deli turkey, a grilled portabella mushroom, and spread the bun with guacamole rather than the typical mayo/mustard/ketchup options. Mmmm. That’s a good burger! I served it with grilled crab stuffed mushrooms that are slightly different than that recipe — no ham, different cheeses, etc, and fruit salad. Later I made some Mango Dreams for us.

Hazelnut Encrusted Crab Cakes with Berry Sauce

If you read yesterday’s post on stuffed mushrooms, you may have wondered why I talked about *cans* of crab meat (as in multiple) but used only half a can for the mushrooms. Here is the reason. The rest were used to make crab cakes.

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This is probably one of my top three favorite recipes ever. It came from my Grandmother, who loved to putter in the kitchen and try new things, not Grandma Smith.

I was out of celery and white pepper so they were left out but it’s still good. I wish there were leftovers for lunch today but it only made 14 small ones and people were fighting over the last one at dinner. Also, huckleberries are particularly difficult to get in the Midwest and I used all the huckleberry jam I got for Christmas in 2005 (side note of praise — this company was so great that when I called them to cry that one jar had arrived broken, they sent me another right away, no poking through the glass slivers to salvage the huckleberries!!) 😛 So, I used some seedless Marionberry jam (not to be confused with Marion Barry who was in a jam) 😉 I had a bottle of wine that was given to us as a gift and I knew nothing about it but I was a surprised to find it a fizzy sweet wine. Sauce still tasted good.

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Crab Cakes with Huckleberry Sauce

2 cups or 1 lb Dungeness crab, flaked
1 egg
1 Tablespoon mayonnaise
2 Tablespoons finely chopped onion
2 Tablespoons finely chopped celery
4 Tablespoons bread crumbs
1 ½ teaspoon Old Bay Spice
½ teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
½ cup finely chopped hazelnuts
Huckleberry Sauce (recipe below)

Whip the egg and add all other ingredients, except the nuts. Mix thoroughly and refrigerate for 15 minutes to one hour. Form into 1 inch balls, flatten and roll in hazelnuts. Saute in virgin olive oil about 2 minutes on each side.

Serve with Huckleberry Sauce.

If you wish, you may refrigerate overnight and reheat to eat or serve cold. After sauteeing, drain on paper towels.

Huckleberry Sauce:
½ cup huckleberry jam or syrup
½ teaspoon lemon juice
2 Tablespoons dry or semi-dry white wine

Heat jam over low heat, add lemon juice and blend. Add wine just before serving.

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I like to use the same basic recipe to make salmon cakes from leftover baked or grilled salmon.

Stuffed Mushrooms

I was inspired by Brilynn at Jumbo Empanadas and her special creations for the Food Holidays. Today is ‘Stuffed Mushroom Day’. I have been saving some cans of crab meat that were originally intended for the New Year’s Eve party and, boy, am I glad I used them this way!! Actually, tonight’s dinner is going to be the source of three separate posts . . . the Husband came home and wondered if it was my birthday and he forgot! 😉

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I didn’t follow a recipe for these and, as usual, I didn’t measure anything, so this is going to be a ‘free form’ recipe.

I bought four ‘baby portabella’ mushrooms — but they were still a good 2.5-3 inches across. I cleaned those up and scraped out the pretty ridges inside the cap. I saved two of the stems and chopped them into a bowl. I added half a can of crab meat, an egg white, a dab of mayo (2 tsp?), a pinch of breadcrumbs, a couple of squirts of Tabasco, about a tablespoon of very finely minced turkey ham, and about a 1/4 cup of finely shredded mozzarella b/c I didn’t have any more interesting cheese on hand.

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I put a bit of that on top of each mushroom, to fill the caps. I topped it with some more finely shredded mozzarella.

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I baked them in a 350 F oven for about 20 minutes.

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Then I served them with dinner. The kids, who moaned in agony that I would cook yucky blecky mushrooms (despite my telling them it wasn’t for them, but a treat for Mom and Dad), suddenly wished I had made more than 4 because, man, these are GREAT!!!

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