Friday, May 16, 2008

spicy crab salad

In this, the winter/spring of my discontent, I am beginning to be afraid that never again will the sun bless us with its bounteous rays. Alas, as I arose this morning, in order to pawn my children off on the purveyors of public education, what did I behold but flakes of snow accumulating at the base of my poor, ragged spring bulbs. The dear little muscari struggled to maintain their composure as did I at this unwanted snowfall. But it is beginning to feel as though summer is just a child's unsubstantial daydream, and winter the cold, cruel reality.

Behold, the snow:
See the large, fluffy flakes there on the bottom left?

There is no color left in my life. All is gray, like the cruel, joyless, bleak winter sky outside.

In a perfect world, flakes of snow would not congregate under the innocent stems of my flowers. Instead, those would be beautiful, pink cherry tree petals that blew there on the wings of a gentle wind, gathered together to rejoice collectively in the idea that warm weather would be here this weekend, yes, even this very weekend. Rejoice, for they are fragrant, lovely cherry blossoms! The weatherman has forecasted, and we shall see 90 degrees once again (on Sunday!) Summer will soon be here!

This Good Food Friday, to celebrate this momentous occasion, a time when it will be too hot to cook a roast for Sunday dinner, I want to share with you this recipe for Spicy Crab Salad by that crazy Food Network lady, Sandra Lee. (Really, who coordinates their kitchen decor with their outfit?) But even though she might be a little OCD, this salad is pretty darn good. I make it a lot in the summer.

Spicy Crab Salad
2 Tblsp mayonnaise
1 Tblsp lemon juice
1 Tblsp Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Seafood Magic Seasoning Blend
1 Tblsp red wine vinegar
1 c cooked brown rice
1 c (4.25 oz) Geisha crabmeat (picked through for shell bits)
3 Tblsp sliced ripe black olives
1 small tomato, diced
10 thin asparagus spears, lightly steamed, trimmed & cut into ½" pieces
Salt and pepper
Basil, if desired

In large bowl, whisk mayonnaise, lemon juice, seafood seasoning, and vinegar to blend. Add rice, crabmeat, and olives. Fold in tomato and asparagus. Cover and refrigerate for 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper before serving. Garnish with basil if desired.

It really is worth buying the Paul Prudhomme seasoning. I quite like the flavors it adds to the salad. Adding the optional basil does seem to tone down the strong seasoning quite a bit. But I personally like a little Magic Seasoning, and don't usually add the basil. I think this could be quite good served in butter lettuce cups and eaten like a lettuce wrap.

Give it a try. You'll like it, and it will banish all those bad cold winter memories far from your mind.

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