by Dan Fattorini
Encouraging children to eat seafood can be a daunting task but often when introducing new flavours to young palettes, it’s more about context than taste. I’m personally a big lover of crab and eat it at any opportunity, but if I placed a plate of dressed crab in front of my children I imagine I would be met with cries of disapproval. I therefore created this recipe as a fun approach to seafood that the kids can join in with making and have fun in character as Spongebob, Patrick and Squidward! It’s just a simple modification of an oriental dumpling filling and uses minced prawn to help bind the crab into a delicious burger.
Krabby Patties (Serves Four)
- The meat of one dressed crab or one tin of crab meat, approximately 120g drained weight
- 240g raw prawns, peeled and deveined
- 2 egg whites
- 1 tsp cornflour
- 4 Burger buns
- Tomato, lettuce, sliced cheese, cucumber, gherkins and tartare sauce to serve
Place the crab meat, prawns, egg white, cornflour and a small pinch of salt into a blender. You can also add your “secret ingredient” at this stage! I used a pinch of MSG for that oriental umami flavour but you could try your favourite herbs or spices. For an adult version chopped coriander works very well. Blend until the mixture becomes a smooth paste and put to one side.
Prepare slices of the vegetables and pickles ready to serve and put your buns halved and upturned under a medium grill to toast them a little, then add a slice of cheese to the bottom half to gently melt.
To cook the patties, place a large non-stick frying pan on a medium heat then once up to temperature, place a metal ring or cookie cutter of an appropriate size on the pan and add a generous dosh of vegetable oil into it. This is a fat free mixture so it will stick unless you use enough oil. Spoon the mixture into the ring, pressing down so that it creates a flat burger shape. If you split the mix into four it should make each on a generous quarter-pounder sized burger. Repeat this for each one, you should be able to cook four at the same time in one pan. After a minute or two you’ll need to flip them. Take care to lift off the pan with a spatula then put a little more oil underneath before placing the uncooked side onto the hot surface. If you flip every minute or so they should take about six or seven minutes to cook. If in doubt, place a knife into the centre of one of the patties and part to one side. It should be fully opaque in the centre.
To serve, layer each burger with the vegetables and the tartare sauce. You may prefer to change to a marie-rose or even ketchup for individual tastes. Technically they should be served with kelp fries so as an amusing accompaniment you could dish them up with some sushi nori or crispy Chinese seaweed.
Hopefully your kids will enjoy them as much as mine do! In fact, they’re so tasty you’ll probably want one yourself and they make a fantastic alternative burger for pescatarian guests