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  • Writer's pictureThe Rough & Tumble

The Rumbly Tummy: Celebratory Krab Cakes for Fancy Occasions.

It's hard to find a good crabcake when you go gluten free, as Mallory discovered five years ago. They're all fally-aparty and mushy without the slight crisp. And it's even harder to find a good crab cake when you go vegan. Sure, there are some delicious alternatives (we can go on and on about Sophie's Kitchen) that use this amazing thing called konjac root that makes a spongy, seafood like consistency. But there's something still a little less than ceremonious-- or fancy-- about ripping open a cardboard box from the freezer and dumping the contents into a vat of oil. And we are looking for something fancy this week, since we are celebrating the RELEASE OF OUR NEW RECORD! And since We Made Ourselves a Home When We Didn't Know will finally be out to the masses after months of hard work and press releases and mixing and t-shirt designing and Kickstarter rewards, we thought it important to mark the occasion with a plate of something that has Fancy in the title. Granted, we put the word in there ourselves, but that's the way of fancy things-- it's what you put in that counts. And in this case, what you leave out. And we've left out everything that comes from an animal. Fancy, indeed.

We've attempted vegan gluten free crabcakes before, and with very little success (chickpeas just taste like chickpeas, even if they are mixed with crabcake like ingredients). So heading into this endeavor felt a bit futile. But we've been feeling a bit braver in the kitchen since putting together the Cook & Color book (and you will, too, if you get one) and thought-- to hell with it! We found a recipe that seemed accessible online, and made our first attempt on New Year's Eve. Then, like good folk musicians, we modified it to make it our own, and now present it to you like we were the first ones to think of it.

So, go celebrate whatever it is you have in your life with this fancy dish. Maybe even put on that new R&T record in the background. We hear they make excellent dinner music to all of your special (and not so special) occasions.

Celebratory Krab Cakes for Fancy Occasions


For Cakes:

1 8oz package tempeh, steamed for 20 minutes

1 flax egg (1 TBSP flax meal + 3 TBSP water, let sit 5 minutes)

2 TBSP olive oil

1 medium red bell pepper, diced finely

1 5 oz can water chestnuts, diced finely

1 very small onion, diced finely

2 garlic cloves, minced

1/4 cup vegan mayo (or regular mayo if vegetarian)

4 TBSP fresh parsley, chopped

zest of 1 lemon

juice of 1/2 lemon

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

2 tsp dry mustard

1 1/2 TBSP Old Bay or cajun seasoning

1 TBSP Dulse, chopped finely

1 tsp garlic powder

salt, pepper and cayenne to taste

4 slices gluten free bread, processed into breadcrumbs

For Sauce:

1/4 vegan mayo

1-2 TBSP horseradish (less if fresh)

1/2 tsp dry dill

2 tsp hot sauce


Green onions, lemon slices and/or fresh parsley


1. After tempeh is steamed, let cool and crumble into small pebbles in large bowl.

2. Saute pepper, onion, garlic, water chestnuts until soft and fragrant. When finished, quickly rinse out pan and set on stove to dry.

3. In bowl, combine remaining ingredients. Mix well. Then add breadcrumbs. You may need to add more if mixture is too wet.

4. Refrigerate for a minimum of 1 hour.

5. Mix your sauce ingredients together and refrigerate. If serving over salad or on a sandwich, now would be a good time to prepare plates and fixins.

6. Form tempeh mixture into patties, should form 6-10 depending on size preference. Patties should not exceed 2 inch thickness. Heat 4 TBSPs olive oil in skillet and fry patties 3-7 minutes each side until brown.

7. Place on salad, sandwich, or eat by themselves. Top with sauce, lemon wedge, parsley or green onions.

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