Surf and Turf Valentines – Surfs Up!


Ah, Valentines Day.  I’m being honest when I tell you, it has always seemed a bit contrived to me.  But I am still a girl, so I wear pink, put a heart wreath on my door, and want to do something special with my boyfriend.  This year, we decided to do a dinner out and a dinner in.  On Friday night, we went to Brasserie Beck, a fantastic Belgian restaurant in DC.  Delicious mussels and frites, amazing coq au vin, and beer pairings to match…a great place we will definitely be returning to.


Saturday night, it was dinner in and my turn to build a yummy menu.  I decided on surf and turf, with crab cakes for an appetizer.  I have not made crab cakes in ages, so I did a little searching for a good recipe.  The one I used was great, very flavorful, the cakes stayed together but were still very “crabby”, and the lemon aioli was a good compliment.  Below is the recipe, along with the modifications I made.  Highly recommended…make the whole recipe and enjoy some awesome crab cake sandwiches the next day. 


Up next…our turf main course!


Spicy Crab Cakes with Lemon Aioli

Recipe courtesy of The Neelys (modifications in parentheses)


*Combine the following in a saucepan, lightly sauté, season with salt and pepper and allow to cool:


2 tablespoons butter

1 shallot, chopped fine (I used red onion…Safeway had no shallots!)

1 clove garlic, minced

1/4 cup finely chopped red pepper


*In a medium bowl, combine the following and stir well:


1/2 cup mayonnaise (I used 1/3 of a cup)

1/2 cup Dijon mustard (I used 1/3 of a cup)

1/2 teaspoon lemon zest

1 teaspoon crab boil seasoning (Old Bay!)

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley leaves

1/2 cup plain panko bread crumbs (I used plain, since I had them…worked fine)

1 large egg

Hot sauce, to taste (about 1 TB for me)

1 pound lump crabmeat


*Add sautéed vegetables and combine.  Make cakes with approximately 2 TB of mix, flatten and coat in more bread crumbs.  Sauté in vegetable oil until brown, about 5 minutes per side.  Serve with Lemon Aioli, on a bed of fresh greens.


*Lemon Aioli.  Combine the following in a small bowl:


1/2 cup mayonnaise

1 clove garlic, minced

1 tablespoon chopped chives

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon lemon zest

Salt and pepper


Perfectly brown, if I do say so myself.

Perfectly brown, if I do say so myself.




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