We made a wonderful, fresh dinner last night. One of the challenges of vacation cooking is that you don’t have much in the way of herbs and spices to work with, so you have to keep it very simple. I brought Trader Jose’s (from Trader Joe’s) extra virgin Spanish olive oil, a peppermill, some ready-to-go minced garlic and sea salt from home. One of the advantages of vacation cooking on Hatteras island is an abundance of fresh seafood and produce.
We visited two places to make the dinner possible. First, the Hatteras Island Farmer’s Market where we picked up all of our vegetables. Second, the Risky Business Seafood company where we picked up crab cakes and a 1/2 pound of fresh shrimp. Both are places that had excellent selections and were worth the hype.
For the vegetables:
We set out a dish of fresh golden teardrop tomatoes.
We steamed fresh corn and topped it with butter, sea salt and peppercorns.
We steamed fresh green beans in chicken broth. After removing the green beans, we reduced the broth down with white wine, salt and pepper. Once it was reduced, we added butter to thicken the sauce.
I cut up some fingerling potatoes and tossed them olive oil, salt and pepper. Then, I roasted them in the oven on a cookie sheet for about 30 minutes at 375 degrees. I flipped them over once to make sure they roasted evenly.
The crab cakes were sauteed in the same pan as the green beans. I think this made a big difference in flavor. We added about a tablespoon of olive oil and a tablespoon of butter and brought it to a sizzle. We cooked them on medium for about 8 minutes. Before we put them in pan, we pressed them with paper towels to blot out excess moisture because they had been frozen.
What the crab cakes looked like sauteeing in the pan.
The finished product: so tender and flaky.