Cromer Crab Pasta with Garlic and Sweetcorn


I received a delivery of dressed Cromer crab today from one of my favourite delis in Norfolk, and wanted to make something tasty. I have made crab and pasta before but wanted to spice it up a bit more this time. I decided that garlic and chili flakes would do the trick, and since I had some fresh egg noodles in the fridge the basic plan was formed.

Ingredients:

  • Dressed Crab 8 oz/ 225 g/ approx. 2 medium crabs
  • Pasta  400 g fresh (I used egg noodles)
  • Garlic  3 cloves
  • Butter 30 g/  2 1/4 Tbs
  • Fresh Parsley – 3 Tbs chopped fine
  • Sweetcorn 1/2 cup
  • Chili Flakes 1/4 tsp
  • Salt to taste

Method:

Prepare pasta according to instructions from the manufacturer and drain. Dice the garlic and parsley. Flake the crabmeat. In a large pan, melt the butter over medium heat, then add the garlic. Stir constantly until it begins to turn golden, then add the sweetcorn and stir until the corn is warmed through. Then add the crabmeat and parsley keeping it moving. Once warm, toss in the pasta, and make sure the other ingredients are will incorporated and that the pasta has evenly taken on the butter. Add salt and chili flakes, and dish-up as 2 servings. Sprinkle with a few more pinches of chili flakes.


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Crab and Pasta with Butter and Parsley

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I received a delivery today from a smoke house on the North Norfolk coast.  A dozen hardwood smoked kippers should tide me over in hot breakfasts for a while, and as an added treat I got four large Cromer crabs.

I enjoyed the first of these by making a simple, but tasty meal with whole wheat pasta, and the meat of one dressed crab.

Ingredients:

  • Crab 1 dressed (about 150 -180 g / 5 to 6 ounces dressed)
  • Whole Wheat Pasta (or pasta of your choice) [approx 100 g]
  • Butter 2 Tbs
  • Fresh Parsley 1 tsp chopped (with stems removed)
  • Ground Black Pepper 1/4 tsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Water (for pasta)

Method:

Book the pasta according to the manufacturer’s instructions.  When it is finished, drain it, and add the butter, parsley, and pepper into the the warm pan.  As the butter melts mix in the pasta, and stir until it is coated in the butter mixture.  Place on a plate or bowl.  Flack the crab meat onto the top of the pasta, and season to your taste.  That’s it.

 

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Lightly Curried Fish Soup

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To avoid freezer burn, I did some sorting of opened and resealed items.  Among these were a quarter bag of broccoli florets, and two pollock fillets which looked rather tired, but still good to eat.  Rather than making a “bland dish” with the fish which might have been a bit disappointing in their slightly dried state, I decided to make a soup with a bit of spice to revive the items’ potential.  The end was a satisfying soup with a hint of curry, that was filling and worth the effort.  You don’t need to use “tired” food to do this, that is just how the recipe came about.  I am sure with “at their prime” ingredients this dish would be even more delicious.

Ingredients:

  • White Fish Fillets (skinless) 2 medium
  • Potatoes 1 baking or 2 medium
  • Broccoli 2 cups of florets separated
  • Curry Paste 3 Tbs
  • Water 1.25 litres
  • Salt to taste

Method:

Wash and peel potatoes (if desired, I personally leave skins on).  Chop potato into 1/2 inch cubes.  Do the same with the fish portions.  Place the curry paste into large soup pan and warm.  Add potato and stir to coat with paste.  Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce to a high simmer for 40 minutes.  You can either leave it chunky or blitz for a smooth soup.  Add additional salt as needed.

 

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“Something Fishy” Seafood Sandwich Filler

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If you get bored with the same old – same old tuna sandwich combos, here is something to add some oomph to your lunch.

Taramasalata almost the exactly the same calories as mayonnaise.   It is made from salted and cured fish roe (usually cod) mixed with olive oil, lemon juice, and a starchy base of bread or potatoes.  Some varieties include garlic, spring onions, or peppers.

  • Tuna 1 tin (I prefer oil packed chunk)
  • Taramasalata 2 Tbs (slightly more if you want creamier consistency)
  • Shrimp (small precooked and shelled) 150 mg
  • Black Ground Pepper pinch
  • Capers (optional) 1 tsp

Method:

Drain the tuna and fork into a medium bowl.  Drain any excess moisture from the shrimp (prawns) and add to the tuna.  Add the pepper and capers (if used) and then stir in the taramasalata until evenly mixed.

Serve with iceberg lettuce and tomato slices in a sandwich or wrap.   It makes 2-4 servings.

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Simple Salmon Cake

 

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Salmon Cakes

It has been a while since I made a Foodie Friday post.  My wife’s illness has moved her onto a rather repetitive diet, most of the elements of which I have previously posted.  Travel Tuesdays have similarly been limited as we have needed to cancel a few trips, and or visited familiar nearby destinations, again previously posted.  But that does not mean everything is now routine.  Below is a quick and easy recipe which I made for my own enjoyment.

One of the memorable meals of my teenage years  was salmon cakes.  These relatively low cost, quick to prepare patties are a good protein source and tick the box for oily fish as well.   While higher quality poached fillets or boneless/skinless tinned varieties can be used, I keep it cheap and simple with standard tinned pink salmon.

Ingredients:

  • Pink Salmon 213 to 230 g tin
  • Cheese Crackers 6-10
  • Egg 1
  • Ground Black Pepper pinch
  • Dijon Mustard 1 tsp
  • Dried Parsley 1 tsp
  • Oil splash

 

Method:

Crumble 6-8 crackers into a bowl and add the parsley and pepper.  Beat the egg and then whip in the mustard.  Drain the salmon and add to the crumbs, then add the egg/mustard mix.  Stir well, and form into two patties.  If overly moist add additional cracker crumbs one cracker’s worth at a time.  When happy with the consistency, heat oil in a shallow frying pan.  Then fry the patties for 3 to 4 minutes per side, or until golden.

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Birthday in Great Yarmouth (My Turn)

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Last August we celebrated my wife’s birthday in Great Yarmouth.  This year we revisited Great Yarmouth as part of my birthday celebration.  We again stayed at the Nelson Hotel, and took in the early summer beach and seaside activities.

One of the first things we noticed was that Yarmouth in the early evening on a Monday was “closed.”  Unbeknownst to us our arrival corresponded to the very time when food is least available along the seafront.  Looking for someplace for a meal, we happened onto Harry Ramsden’s.  We had passsed at least three other fish and chip shops between the hotel and Ramsden’s and it too looked to be closed.   But the sign on the pavement indicated otherwise.

On entering the server took a couple of minutes to notice me, it being a slow night, and I asked if they were open. He responded that they were but it would be a few minutes while he finished the task he was on. He then took my order, and I went to wait. The fish batter was dark, and the haddock a bit grey looking, but the flavour and texture were okay. The onion rings were a little greasy, but that was excused as they were the real thing, not just the minced pulp of onions like some places serve. The price was a little dear for what I got, but all in all it was adequate. So much for “world famous” however.

On returning to the hotel I was able to take in the sounds of the gulls, and to relax a bit.  The Nelson is rated as a three star hotel.  It is a Georgian/Regency building, and has a mixed 1970s decor, but it is clean (if not a little tired) and the staff are wonderfully helpful.

A note to those with mobility issues is that the upper floors do have occasional stairs in the hallways, and there is only one small lift.

We had a sea view room on the second floor, almost exactly under the room we had on our previous stay, so the view was almost exactly the same with the Sea Life Centre and Wellington Pier as the features along with the sea of course.

The room had plenty of hot water though the tub was narrow, and the mattress on this occasion was hard, and a little uneven.  The room as a whole was comfortable however and very quiet being isolated along with its neighbouring room from the main hall way by a fire door.

Breakfast was included in the price, and hot items were ordered through table service, with toast and accompanying items were available in a buffet in an annex to the dining room.

Again, staff make this place.  They took a weary three star establishment, and made it a place worth staying in.

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Sorry for blurred pic of a wonderful seafood platter

The high point of the visit was the birthday meal at the Ocean Spray Seafood & Steakhouse.   The decor is maritime (fishing nets, shells, etc) and the atmosphere is calm and the service friendly.   All customers are greeted warmly and regulars fawned over by the staff.  

On this occasion we had a “Dips” starter with warm pita bread served with olives, hummus, taramasalata, and tzatziki.  To be honest, this starter can make a meal in itself, and though intended for a two person sharer, it would easily accommodate three.

We then had the seafood platter with Greek salad, and a half lobster to share.  There was the aforementioned lobster, grilled king prawns, a cod and haddock fillet, shell on shrimp, whitebait, scampy, and calamori served in a garlic butter sauce.  This was surrounded with portions of feta cheese and black olives.  New potatoes rounded out the meal.  Excellent does not begin to describe the meal.  The platter easily fed the two of us, especially after the generous dips course.

This is a must try seafood establishment if in Yarmouth.

It was a wonderful birthday, and we are booked to visit again when hers comes around.

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Tuna Salad Eggs

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Here is an quick lunch option, that is tasty, and also makes for a good “pot-luck” side offering. It uses tinned tuna (and I recommend using oil packed for the flavour), and hard boiled eggs.  It is similar to deviled eggs, but with a little less fat as the number of yolks is reduced).  I have also found that this recipe works just as well with flaked tuna as it does with chunks.

Ingredients:

  • Tuna 160 g tin (oil packed)
  • Eggs 6
  • Mayonnaise 2 Tbs (I used light option)
  • Onion 1/2 finely chopped
  • Gherkin 1 medium to large finely chopped
  • Salt pinch
  • Pepper pinch

Method:

Hard boil the eggs in salted water for 8-10 minutes. Cool and shell. Slice eggs in half and remove the yolks. Set aside 4 yolks for other salads or recipes. In a bowl break up the remaining two yolks with a fork, and add the chopped onion and gherkin. Drain the tuna and add it to the egg mixture.  Add seasoning and mayonnaise and mix well with the fork. Spoon a the mixture into the 12 egg while halves, filling the yolk cavities, and over filling as the tuna mixture allows.  Serve as a side, or tapas type dish.

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Smoked Haddock Baked in Parsley Mayo

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This dish is exactly what it says it is.  It is a tasty seafood dish and is easy to prepare.

Ingredients:

  • Smoked Haddock Fillets 2 x 130 – 150g
  • Mayonnaise 2 Tbs
  • Dried Parsley Flakes 1 tsp

Method:

Preheat oven to 180 C/ 350 F.  Remove any skin from the fish.  Mix the mayo and parsley.  Spoon the onto the fillets and  spread to cover as much surface as possible.  Lay the fish into a baking pan and cook uncovered for 20 minutes.  Remove from oven and allow to stand three or four minutes before serving.

That’s it.

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Garlic Cod

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I managed to get two really lovely cod loins, and was thinking of keto-friendly options that I might try.  I decided to go with garlic as my enhancement flavour, and I think it worked really well

Ingredients:

  • Cod Loin 300 – 400 g (two large skinless, boneless cuts)
  • Ghee or Butter 2 tsp
  • Ground Almonds or Almond Flour 3 heaped Tbs
  • Garlic Powder 2 tsp
  • Salt pinch
  • Egg 1
  • Water 1 tsp

Method:

Preheat an oven to 200 C / 395 F.  Lightly spread melted ghee or butter into an oven dish.  Whisk the egg with the tsp of water, then dip the fillets into the egg mixture.  In a separate bowl mix the dry ingredients, then dip the fish into it.  Once covered with the nut flour and garlic mixture lay the fillets into the greased dish.  Pat any remaining flour/garlic onto the top of the fish, then cover loosely with foil.  Place in the oven for 15 minutes.  Then remove the foil from the dish and return to the oven for an additional 5 to 7 minutes depending on the thickness of he loins.  Serve with salad and a garlic-based dressing or garlic mayo.

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Quick Seafood Soup

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Seafood Soup

We have been on holiday in Cornwall over the Christmas break. As one never knows what the availability and quality of food might be in an area, especially when self-catering, and over a holiday, I brought my trusty soup maker with me.

While I did make my standard Broccoli and Cheese soup, I also had the opportunity to make a seafood soup as well, as a kind of treat.  This is a simple recipe, which goes a long way in feeling indulgent even though it is basic.

Ingredients:

  • Salmon Filet 150 g
  • Smoked Haddock 150 g
  • Carrots 4
  • Double Cream 150 ml
  • Vegetable or Fish Stock Cubes 2
  • Water 1.25 litres
  • Ground Black Pepper to taste

Method:

Scrape and dice the carrots and add them to a soup maker or large pot. Add the water and bring to a low boil (in soup maker run though one cycle). After about 30 minutes puree the carrots in the water to make a thin stock. Cube the fish portions and add them to the pot (soup maker) along with the stock cubes. Cook for one more cycle or 20 minutes, and then remove from heat.  Stir in the cream and season with pepper.

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