I like to center my New Years resolutions things I wish I did more of anyway. One year, it was to not skip a concert at 9:30 just because I don't have someone to go with. 9:30 Club is a friendly place and it's easy to go by yourself and not feel alone. It was a fun resolution to keep and easy to keep up after the year passed.
This year I decided I would go to more restaurants. Doesn't have to mean going out to eat more often, but when I do, to try different ones. Sure, I love Marvin's mussels, but what else is good on U St? That sort of thing.
I'm also not opposed to starting a resolution late in the game or getting a head's start. My second resolution has become to make as many recipes from my new America's Test Kitchen cookbook as possible (and to generally use my cookbooks more). I had some leftover crab meat from Christmas Eve and decided to make crab cakes. A good Marylander, I first looked at the side of the Old Bay container, but then remembered that ATK had a crab cake recipe. And since they also call for Old Bay (a must in a good cake), I decided to give them a whirl.
In the past year or so, I've been very good about my mise en place. No more forgetting an important ingredient and I love using all my little ramekins!
Crab cakes are great because prep is so quick. Dump everything into a mixing bowl and then combine with a spoon or your hands. Couldn't be easier than that.
I originally was making these as appetizer so used one of my scoops to help make them all the same size
and lined them all up on a cookie sheet before smooshing them into little patties.
After a day's rest in the fridge (was only going to be a few hours, but then my friend called with a design emergency), I took them over to my sister's so I could share them for dinner. My brother-in-law then took over the cooking, browning them to perfection under the broiler.
I forgot to take a picture of the end result, but my empty plate speaks volumes!
I doubled the amount of Old Bay because I love it - and I don't really trust Yankee tastebuds for a Maryland dish. It would have been great as an appetizer, but as a main dish, I think I wouldn't have added quite so much - especially because I also put some in the tartar sauce. I used low-fat mayonnaise and the full amount of bread crumbs and shallots instead of green onions since that's what I had on hand. But I think I'd do it exactly the same next time because I love shallots. The recipe calls for a "green herb" and I used parsley. I'm not opposed to fancified crab cakes, but I was looking for something authentic.
Overall, I'm really happy with this recipe and with my New Year's resolution!