Happy Friday and I hope you’ve had a good week so far. For those of us in Nigeria, yesterday, May 29, was a public holiday to celebrate Democracy day. We love our public holidays here, and yesterday’s was very welcome indeed, especially as I’ve been a bit under the weather. I was really grateful for the time off work to rest, and catch up on some blogging :).
A few weeks ago, I was invited to collaborate with the lovely people at Philips and Ogilvy Entertainment on a campaign for the Philips AirFryer. The recipe below is one of the recipes that I created with my new favourite toy. I absolutely love this piece of equipment and it has very quickly become a staple in my kitchen because it allows me to fry stuff with almost zero oil. And you know me… I love food, but not at the expense of healthy eating, so this helps me to strike a happy balance. I will do a more detailed post/review later on.
Aaaaanyway, I recently made crab cakes with yam as a binder, as we had a few people coming over. These make really good starters/appetizers before your main meal and can even be served as canapes if you are thinking of interesting ideas for a drinks and nibbles do. The idea for this was to achieve something traditional that tasted new and fresh, and which played on both sweet and salty sensations. The crab is wonderfully briney, and the dip is quite sweet so using the yam as a filler balances the two and brings it all together nicely. I’ve made this before with yam/mackerel and both versions taste great, however, I think the mackarel version goes better with a peppery dip. Enjoy 🙂 xx
5 slices of boiled yam, grated or mashed
10 steamed crab claws with the meat removed or approx 1 cup of crab meat; (for mackerel, use 2 mackarel fillets, cooked and flaked)
3 teaspoons of finely grated onions
1 small squeeze of fresh lemon juice
1 handful of chopped spring onions
1 teaspoon of finely grated garlic
1 teaspoon of finely grated ginger
1 teaspoon of finely chopped scotch bonnet pepper or birds eye chillis
A tiny dash of fish sauce
A pinch of salt
Honey Mayo Lemon Dip
5 teaspoons of mayo
2 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon of honey
1 teaspoon of white wine vinegar
*makes 15 – 20 yam/crab cakes*
- To make the yam cakes, place the crab meat in a large bowl and add all the ingredients except the grated yam. Mix well and then when combined, add the mashed yam and mix again. Add a pinch of salt if you need to, but be careful as crab can be quite naturally salty and you don’t want to over do it!
- Then, take enough to make a ball of yam in the palm of your hand. Once the ball is made and packed quite tight, you can then begin to flatten it into a cake, making sure the tops and edges are smooth and no bits of veg or crab are hanging too far out.
- Place the moulded cakes onto a baking tray or some plates and leave in the fridge to cool for half an hour or up to 12 hours if you are prepping in advance for a party. This helps them to set and stay intact while frying.
- While the yam/crab cakes are bonding in the fridge, make the dip. Mix the honey and mayo in a small bowl. Then add the other ingredients and whisk. Refrigerate.
- Fry and enjoy. I fried these up in my Philips AirFryer. If you don’t have an AirFryer, then you can fry these in a non-stick pan with a miniscule amount of oil or cook them under the grill until golden on each side. Try not to deep fry these as they might disintegrate in the oil, depending on how soft/hard your yam is. Notice the darker cakes in the middle are a bit wooly round the edges – they are deep fried. The ones at the sides which remained intact are air fried.
- Once the yam/crab cakes are all fried, you can plate up anyway you like and sprinkle some toasted sesame seeds over. I decided to plate this with a little bit of my honey mayo dip and some wasabi for those who like the heat. I love wasabi and the way it burns my nose :).
P.S. Mackerel tends to be called ‘Titus Fish’ in Nigerian markets, so if you are shopping for it, bear that in mind. Also, I noticed that grated yam tends to disintegrate more easily, whereas the mashed variety holds together better. So feel free to experiment and see what works for you.