Can kosher "crabmeat" be used to make crab cakes?
I buy the kosher "crabmeat" and I make cold crabmeat salad which people like very much, and some (who would know) say tastes authentic - , of course they might just be trying to make me feel good. But most of my friends and family, who have no way of knowing any better, like it very much.
I'd like to try my hand at making crab cakes, but it seems to be that the kosher crabmeat is a cooked, processed food. In that case, does it lend itself to other recipes that require further cooking or frying?
Has anyone prepared it in any other recipe?
Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that a day would come when I'd be making crabmeat salad for Shabbos. :-)
Surimi crab isn't just for Jews. It's pretty widely used. (real crab is pricey) And there are lots of recipes out there. In fact, lots of commercial "crab" and seafood salads are made using it, not real crab.
Park East (Manhattan) makes delectable crab cakes, I have always assumed that this is what they use. Though I don't know for sure and have never made my own.
Google us something ike surimi crab cakes and go for it.
No personal experience with real crab cakes, but I think lump crabmeat is what is really used to make crab cakes, and I don't think surimi has the same texture at all. That said, I did once make mock crab cakes using it, by chopping it up into pretty fine pieces. It can be done, but since I never had real crab cakes, even in my previous "life," I have no idea how authentic they were.
I'm wary for two reasons. One, sweet foods that are good cold are often icky when heated. Crabsticks are much sweeter than crab (due to added sugar, I assume). Might not be the best use of the product. Also, crab is texturally like a hybrid of fish and chicken in my mind - it's delicate, but holds together. It's a nugget of precious savory meatiness in the midst of the mushy crabcake filler. I'm not sure that crabsticks will provide that balance in the same way, since they themselves are sorta mushy. Maybe a real fish with some sweeetness (seabass?) would be a better approximation, since it is less sweet and more meaty? But hey, what do I know? Give it a try. I would start with a small batch.
If you chop the phoney crab very fine (almost ground) it will make a good krabcake. It will not be good in large pieces as it has a completely different texture than lump crab and breaks down/apart while cooking.
Best is to make a mixture of finely ground ingredients, adding mayo for moisture, form the cakes, roll in Panko breadcrumbs, and then either pan fry (not deep fat fry) or cook on a griddle sprayed with Pam or similar product until dark golden brown. We add finely chopped celery, onions and some mashed potato into our mix and season with salt, pepper and a small amount of sage.