Mock Maryland Crab Cakes

UPDATE - I now make a soy free version of this recipe called Crabless Cakes.

If you've made mock fish dishes before and been disappointed, like me, because they have lacked that fishy/seaweed flavor then this is the recipe for you. The trick is adding a lot more seaweed and old bay seasoning than you think should be added.

I have is a food processor. I wouldn't even suggest making this recipe without one or a mini chopper. Unless you're into lots of tedious, mincing of vegetables by hand. I switched out the firm tofu to extra firm. That way, I didn't have to bother with draining and pressing the firm tofu. Please read important notes at the bottom of this post.

2 tsp virgin olive oil
1/2 cup celery, minced (2 stalks celery)
1/2 cup carrot, minced (1 large carrot)
1/2 cup onion, minced (1 small onion)
1/2 cup green or red pepper, minced (1/2 small pepper)

1 block extra firm, NOT pressed, crumbled like cottage cheese
1 cup chickpea flour
1/2 cup vegan mayo, store bought or recipe below
3 Tbsp + 2 tsp nori seaweed, ground (use a coffee grinder)
1/3 cup water
1 Tbsp Old Bay seasoning (find at Metro supermarket in seafood section)
2 tsp dry mustard
2 tsp black salt or regular salt

1/2 cup chickpea flour (to coat crab cakes)

Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the celery, onion, carrot and pepper; sauté until softened but still firm. 

In a large bowl combine the sautéed vegetable, tofu, flour, mayo, seaweed, water, Old Bay seasoning, mustard, salt (don't add the 1/2 cup chickpea flour it's for coating) and mix very well with your hands. Shape into patties.

Using a 1/3 cup measure, shape the mixture into ten 1/2 inch thick cakes. Spread the 1/2 cup chickpea flour on a plate. Carefully dredge the cakes in the chickpea flour to coat.

Heat some oil in a frying pan over medium heat. In batches, gently place the cakes in hot oil and cook on one side, until they’re golden brown about 8 minutes. With a spatula, gently flip the cakes and cook until golden brown on the other side. Pour tarter sauce on top then serve. Makes 10 small patties.

Vegan Mayo

1/2 cup firm tofu
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp wet mustard
1/2 tsp sea salt

1/2 cup light tasting olive oil (any light tasting oil)

Place everything in a food processor (except the oil) and blend. While it’s still running very slowly pour in the oil using a very thin stream of oil.

Tartar Sauce

1 cup vegan mayo
1/4 cup relish
2 tsp wet mustard

In a small bowl, mix all ingredients together. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving. It tastes better the longer you let the flavors marinade.

Important Notes: Do not taste the crab cakes before cooking because all you will taste is the Nori seaweed and you will think it’s not going to turn out. The strong seaweed tastes mellows during the cooking process. Once you add tartar sauce on top of the finished crab cakes they will have the perfect flavor.

I always buy T & T brand sushi nori available at Fortinos supermarket. I have tried a few other brands when I was not able to get the T & T brand and they had very little flavor to them. I’m sure the brand I buy is not the only brand that is good but I just wanted to mention this in case you make this and it does not have a nice seafood flavor it would be because of that.