tabbouleh and crab cakes

Massive car bomb last week in the streets of Lebanon and it reminded me how glad I was my other half’s trip to Beirut this month was postponed. So yeah, nay on taking photos in war zones, just stay put for now and we’ll eat a bunch of tabbouleh to make up for the lack of travel. Good thing ’cause I have tons of parsley and mint around, and I do like a lot of both in my tabbouleh, more so than the rest of the house so I always mix in more on my plate. Tabbouleh is the freshest tasting side you can make, it’s so easy to put together, just eyeball and season to taste.

I always use 3 spoons of Bob’s Redmill quick cooking bulgar wheat that I rinse a couple of times, drain  and set aside in a bowl for an hour, fluff up with a fork. Rinse and dry a handful of flat leaf parsley and a handful of mint and finely chop. Finely slice 2 spring green onions as well, and dice some ripe tomatoes, place them in a sieve and let the tomato juices drain off. Mix everything together, squeezing in half to 3/4 of a lemon (I used a lime cause I had no lemons), drizzle some good olive oil in, some black pepper and flaky sea salt to taste and add a tiny pinch of cinnamon and cumin (or allspice or Lebanese 7-spice mixture and when I don’t have either I’ll just toss in a Goan fish curry spice mixture I have in my pantry, with similar spices in the mix it works too). Easy and tasty.

And a nod to the frankenstorm that wreaked havoc on the east coast last night I whipped up some crab cakes for tonight’s dinner. Again no recipe really, just eyeball it and season to taste. Slice up a few shallots and fry in a bit of olive oil til soft and cooked through, set aside and let cool. In a mixing bowl toss together an egg, a pinch of sea salt, black pepper, 1 lb of crab meat, some chopped fresh parsley, a pinch of fresh lemon zest, a pinch of ground mustard, a few heaping spoons of vegenaise (or mayo), the fried shallots and some bread crumbs (I only had a bit left and so I added in some semolina flour to help it bind together). Form them into cakes and cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight. Fry them up in some olive oil on both sides, serve them with a creamy remoulade (a mixture of vegenaise (or mayo), some finely chopped white onions and cornichons, a squeeze of lemon juice and freshly grated horseradish and hot sauce to taste). Stay safe and warm east coast family and friends, damn Sandy!


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