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Topic: Crab Stuffed Flounder Done Two Ways  (Read 1207 times)
Tags for this thread: recipe , crab , flounder  Add new tag
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« on: February 23, 2011 10:13:50 AM »

It's official, I'm sick of winter.  I love snow, sleet, freezing rain, cold, snow, grilling in the snow, did I mention snow?  But it's time to think about warmer climes.  Those thoughts got me thinking about Dauphin Island, Alabama and all the great seafood Dad and Tom (the other two Grillin Fools) grilled last April.  Yeah, I realize it was 9 months ago, but it's never too late to share some good Grillin.

This recipe was so good, they made it a second time while they were there and documented them both. 

Here's the link to both write ups combined into one, and here are those pics that I'm putting up right around lunch time.  Sorry...

Method one, in small tins:

Method two, flounder folder over the crab stuffing:

For the risk averse, the full recipe, sans pics:

Heres an interesting and delicious seafood grilling recipe performed ocean-side on Dauphin Island, Alabama:

This treat was suggested by the ever-knowledgeable John, who is on the staff at Skinners Seafood Shop.  Simply, fresh flounder fillets are wrapped around the inside of small foil containers and the center filled with crab cake mixture.

Two of The Grillin Fools, and Dan, ventured to Skinners to begin the process.  Blondie (Kelly) quickly, and with a smile I might add, extracted fillets from fresh Gulf flounder.  The gal is a wizard with a fillet knife.

Here she is working her magic:

Dan supervising:

Heres photo of what is left of the flounder:

Tom, Dan, and I returned to the condo where Dan assumed the role of sous chef preparing many of the ingredients for the crab cake mixture.  I was chosen, lucky me, to sift through a pound of claw crab meat and carefully remove any remaining bits of shell.  Please note that lump crab meat could be used, but according to the locals the claw is sweeter.  We always like to do what the locals dois there any better advice?

This is the crab cake recipe modified slightly from someone who knows a thing or two about crab cakes: Emeril.

Ingredients for crab cakes

2 tbsp olive oil
cup finely chopped yellow onions
cup finely chopped celery
1 tsp salt
tsp cayenne pepper
2 tbsp finely chopped green onions
2 tbsp finely chopped flat leaf parsley
1 lb. lump crabmeat
cup mayonnaise
2 tbsp fresh grated Parmesan-Reggiano
2 large eggs lightly beaten
cup Italian-style bread crumbs
2 tsp Creole Seasoning

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat, add onions, celery, salt, and cayenne and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes.  Add the green onions and parsley and cook until wilted, about one minute, then remove form the heat.

Place the crab meat in a large bowl and add the cooked vegetables.  Add the mayonnaise, cheese, and egg and stir gently with a large wooden spoon.  Add the bread crumbs and stir gently:

While prepping the crab cake mixture, make up the tin foil bowls with the flounder inside.  Spray the bowls with non stick cooking spray or a little vegetable oil and arrange the flounder fillets around the outside:

Tom then spoons the crab cake mixture into the center of the foil tins.

Then add a pat of butter to each tin:

The tins are taken to the balcony where the traveling grill is fired up with coals on the left and seafood pies on the right:

We decided to speed up the process a bit with some direct grilling to get things rolling:

The foil tins were rotated 15 minutes in and they were looking good but Tom wasnt satisfied with the texture of the crab cake mixture so they were popped under the broiler for 5 minutes to crisp a bit. In retrospect, I would suggest pre-cooking the crab cake mixture partially in a skillet prior to spooning into the foil tins.  Hey!  Were really cooking here, and remember, we do show our mistakes.  This was our first ever attempt at this recipenotice the lack of actual cooking time?  That may be attributed to those glasses of Chalk Hill Chard.  We were on vacation after all:

Ready to eat:

Sides accompanying this entre were some spectacular green beans Glenda prepared, boiled fresh Gulf shrimp with cocktail sauce, and that wonderful Lighthouse Bakery French Bread.

Our trip to this area includes many visits to the bakery operated by Mary and Daniel Scarcliff.

The mini-loaves of French bread are legendary and I always arrange to pick up several dozen on the last day there to travel back home for use in recreating some island recipes.  Everything prepared at this establishment has always been superb including cinnamon rolls, crab quiche (simply amazing!), chocolate chip cookies, and danishes to mention a fewthe hot chocolate, according to the gals, may be the best theyve ever had.  Sandwiches from the deli menu are very large and quite tasty too.  The owners and staff are friendly and extremely accommodating.  A visit to the island is not complete without the treats from Lighthouse Bakery.

Heres the final meal plated:

Once the meal is presented and consumed, the consensus was that we should do this again soon.  This can be duplicated rather easily at home and almost any delicate whitefish will substitute for flounder should it be difficult to find in your area.  The combination of flavors and textures of this dinner will make it a regularly repeated vacation favorite.

Here is a second version of flounder and crab cake performed 3 days later after Tom and Dan caught several one evening at home of Cameron Moore, owner of Richees Barbeque Sauce (warning, the next three pictures are doctored to add color thanks to no flash.  Dan, in the middle, isnt really that orange):

To give you and idea of how big some of the flounder is, this is a standard Coleman cooler:

This time around we didnt have the ingredients for the crab cakes but found a ready-to-go mixture for sale at Skinners and decided to give it a try.  This is so easysimply stuff the folded fillets of flounder with the crab cake mixture and secure with a toothpick:

Once they are wrapped securely its time to fire up the grill. A perforated grill pan is employedsometimes a good idea with seafood that can trickle through the grill grates.

Tom is handling the grilling duties while I man, a feeble attempt at best, Scotts Nikon to capture delicious images to share with everyone.

Tom now bastes the stuffed flounder with a blend of melted butter and minced garlic resulting in a few flare ups.

Once the flounder is opaque and a little outer crisp is on the crab cake stuffing, we are ready to dine:

The flounder was accompanied by sides of rice pilaf, a spinach-strawberry-almond salad with raspberry dressing, and more of that French bread.  The Chalk Hill Chard was a nice addition to this seafood delight as well:

Once dinner is complete Tracy ventures out to the deck to view the pending sunset.

If you have any questions about the two different recipes, Skinners Seafood, the Lighthouse Bakery, or Dauphin Island in general, feel free to leave a comment below or shoot me an email.

Also, the media coverage last year of the gulf oil spill was completely overblown.  We were there during the first weeks of the spill, could see the boons from our terrace, but never saw a drop of oil.  We stayed in contact with some of the folks down there, including Skinner, and there was little or no oil that ever hit the beaches despite what the national, journalists, were espousing.  One has to wonder if some of the oil that was shown in those clips was not 10W30 weight.

Dauphin Island is what a true vacation is all about.  Relaxing at the pool or the beach, getting some fishing in, doing some shopping and of course, grilling up some amazing seafood.  If you want t-shirt and souvenir stands on every corner with go karts and mini golf next to them, this isnt the place for you.  If you want to come home  calm and content, and feel like youve been on vacation rather than feel like you need a vacation to recover from the one you just went on, then Dauphin Island is the place for you.  We highly recommend you fall in love with Dauphin Island, Alabama just like we have.

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