Tag Archives: appetizer

Crab & Walnut Stuffed Mussels

Crab & Walnut Stuffed Mussels

When I was first approached by Joana at Yummy Food, I felt flattered, excited, and then totally freaked out. I love food, I love cooking, I love making things up as I go in the kitchen. But Mediterranean is totally outside my comfort zone of typical North American comfort food, and creating a totally original, unpublished recipe with flavour profiles I am not really familiar with? EEK! But as you can see, I accepted the challenge nonetheless!

Crab & Walnut Stuffed Mussels

I spent a great deal of time thinking and planning this recipe. To me, “Mediterranean” is all about freshness, and there is nothing that embodies fresh more than seafood. I used panko and walnuts to offset the creaminess of the mussels, crab and parmesan, and lemon to add that lovely acid required with seafood. Baked until crispy, these are perfect served right in the half-shell, and the perfect single-bite appy. This is the type of dish I could see served on a cobblestone patio, outside some lovely little restaurant overlooking the ocean.

Crab & Walnut Stuffed Mussels

This recipe is part of a contest sponsored by Canarias. I’m so glad I opted to take part, it was so much fun to push myself outside of my comfort zone and cook something I normally wouldn’t.

Crab & Walnut Stuffed Mussels

Crab & Walnut Stuffed Mussels

2 lbs live mussels
1/2 cup water
6 Tbsp butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup crabmeat
1/2 cup panko
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
1/3 cup fresh grated parmesan
1/4 cup chopped parsley
Zest of one lemon
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Salt & pepper

Wash ad scrub mussels – discard any that are open and don’t close with a tap on a firm surface. In a pot with a tight-fitting lid, place closed mussels and water and bring to a boil. Steam for a few minutes, until they open up. Discard any that didn’t open and let cool to room temperature.

Carefully break off the top half of the shell, and scoop out the meat to detach it from the bottom, but leave it in the half-shell for presentation and serving purposes. Set aside.

In a small pot, melt butter over medium heat. When melted and warm, add garlic and stir to let the garlic cook for a minute or so to infuse the butter. Remove from heat and set aside.

In a bowl, combine crabmeat, panko, walnuts, parmesan, parsley, lemon zest, lemon juice, butter and garlic. Mix well.

Place a generous scoop of the stuffing mixture on top of each half-shell mussel, and lay out on a baking sheet. Bake at 425 until crispy and golden, 5-8 minutes should suffice. Let cool a bit and serve warm!

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Wasabi Deviled Eggs

I love eggs in all their incarnations. Fried, boiled, egg salad – it’s all good to me, but probably my favourite egg is the deviled egg. Fluffy eggs, creamy mayo, oodles of flavour all crammed into a couple bites of eggy goodness! (Or, if you’re a stuffer like me, one bite of eggy goodness.) So when we received an invite to a dinnertime Halloween party on a day during which I wouldn’t have a lot of time to prepare a complicated appetizer, deviled eggs was the obvious choice.

I learned a few things this time around. First, if you’re having trouble peeling the hard-boiled eggs, crack the shells all around and let them sit in a bowl of cool water for 10-15 minutes. The water will get in under the shells and loosen them, making them much easier to peel. You can also peel under cool running water, but I actually prefer the soaking method. Second, if you need to make deviled eggs for transport, don’t pre-assemble. Place the whites in a container, and put the yolk mix into a ziploc baggie. Once at your destination, snip the corner off the baggie, squeeze the yolk mix into the whites, and garnish! You’ll have perfect deviled eggs every time, and not have to worry about them squishing or smushing in transit.

These eggs were such a hit at the party, they were the first appy to be completely devoured. I won’t admit to how many I ate, but suffice to say, there are some eggs in my fridge destined to meet a deviled fate tomorrow! This recipe makes plenty, so you may want to scale it down for a smaller batch. They’re also a smidge on the spicy side, but not overly hot. If you are concerned about heat from the wasabi paste, start with half the amount called for and continue to add to taste.

Wasabi Deviled Eggs

18 hard-boiled eggs
2/3 cup mayonnaise
2 tsp mirin
2 tsp rice wine vinegar
1/2 small onion, finely diced
1 Tbsp dried parsley
2 Tbsp wasabi paste
Grey salt & red pepper pieces, for garnish

Peel eggs, split lengthwise and scoop yolks into a bowl. Add mayonnaise, mirin, vinegar, onion, parsley and wasabi, and mix until thoroughly combined. Spoon or pipe into prepared eggwhite halves, sprinkle with grey salt and garnish with little red pepper triangles for a truly devilish look.

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