Saturday, May 30, 2009

Crab Salad in Phyllo Cups

For my cousin's bridal shower, I decided to make a simple crab salad. To dress it up a bit, I served it in these miniature phyllo cups. I used a mixture of real crab meat and imitation crab meat, just because real crab meat is so expensive where I am from. This was easy to put together, and was a big hit at the party.

Crab Salad in Phyllo Dough Tartlettes
makes about 65-70 appetizers

  • 8 oz crab meat (I used back fin meat)
  • 16 oz imitation crab meat, chopped
  • 1 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 stalk of celery, minced
  • 2 green onions, minced
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 teaspoons (or more if you like) Old Bay Seasoning
  • 3 tablespoons flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • salt and pepper
  • Approximately 70 miniature phyllo dough cups

  • In one bowl, combine the crab meat and the imitation crab meat.
  • In a separate bowl, combine the mayonnaise, celery, green onions, lemon juice, milk, Old Bay, and parsley. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Pour the sauce over the crab meat, and gently mix. Try and fold the sauce into the crab meat as to not break up the pieces of crab meat. Overmixing can result in a "pasty" salad.
  • Spoon the salad into the phyllo cups and serve immediately. I probably fit about 2 teaspoons into each cup.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

TWD: Fresh Mango Bread

This week's Tuesdays with Dorie is from Kelly of Baking with the Boys . She chose for us to bake the Fresh Mango Bread from Baking: From My Home to Yours by Dorie Greenspan. The recipe can be found here. I have never been a huge fan of mangoes. Either I get one, and it's not ripe enough and too sour, or it just seems to have an "off" flavor for me. Nevertheless, I still keep tasting them, hoping that one day I will find that "magic" mango that will turn things around for me. So I was excited to try the Fresh Mango Bread. It's a pretty simple recipe, you don't even have to use a mixer, just a whisk and a wooden spoon. The dough is a little thick, but it eventually came together.

I made a few substitutions/alterations to the original recipe.
  • I decreased the amount of white sugar from 1 cup to 1/2 cup. It just seemed like too much for me, and it would make the bread too sweet.
  • I decreased the amount of ginger from 1 1/2 teaspoons to 1 teaspoon.
  • I didn't have any golden raisins so I chopped up 1/2 cup of dried apricots and used them instead.
  • I didn't use one loaf pan, I used 4 mini-loaf pans.
  • I used the leftover lime zest and lime juice and made a glaze with powdered sugar to spread over the bread.
  • Since I used mini-loaf pans, I decreased the baking time to 40 minutes.
The bread was really tasty. The bread was sweet and the apricots went well with the mangos, which have a really nice flavor when baked in the bread. The glaze was a great addition. The tartness of the glaze balanced out the sweetness of the bread. The Black and White Banana Loaf is still my favorite quick bread we have made so far though, but if I had some mangoes on hand, I would definitely make it again. Be sure the check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll to see what other members did with their recipes.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Orange Creamsicle Cake

For Mother's Day, my mom requested that I make a cake that tasted similar to one she gets at a local BBQ restaurant. It tastes similar to a Creamsicle, basically an orange and vanilla cake. These cakes have also been called poke cakes, or Jello cakes, or refrigerator cakes. I found this recipe on, and it seemed like a good choice. I made a few changes, because it seemed that the cake might be too sweet with some of the components. Fortunately, the cake turned out really well, and was a big hit on Mother's Day. It looked great with the streaks of orange running through the cake.

Orange Creamsicle Cake
serves 12
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 (3 ounce) packages orange flavored gelatin mix, divided
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1/4 cup cold water
  • 1 cup cold milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 (3.4 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 1 (8 ounce) carton frozen whipped topping, thawed

  1. In a mixing bowl, combine cake mix, eggs, water and oil. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Pour into an ungreased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees F for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Using a meat fork or large skewer, poke holes in cake. Cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a bowl, dissolve one package of gelatin in boiling water. Stir in cold water. Slowly pour over cake. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours. In a mixing bowl, combine milk, vanilla, pudding mix and remaining gelatin; beat on low for 2 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes; fold in whipped topping. Frost cake. Refrigerate leftovers.