Sunday, March 24, 2013


I love crab cakes, don't you?  And these are super easy to make.  Serve atop a bed of greens or on a toasted english muffin--just perfect.  Don't know why you couldn't substitute canned salmon for the crab.  It's on my list to try so I will let you know.  This recipe came from my friend, Kathleen.  Not sure  the origination but knowing Kathleen, I'm sure she tweaked it a bit.


·         Crab cakes:

·         2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives

·         1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

·         1 1/2 tablespoons canola-based mayonnaise 

·         1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind

·         1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

·         1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

·         1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper

·         1 large egg 

·         1/3 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)

·         1 pound lump crabmeat, drained and shell pieces removed – Costco sells a pound of lump crab meat for a great price and it doesn’t have any shell pieces to remove

·         1 tablespoon olive oil


1.     1. To prepare crab cakes, combine first 8 ingredients. Add panko and crab, tossing gently to combine. Cover and refrigerate 30 minutes. 

2.     2. Fill a 1/3-cup dry measuring cup with crab mixture. Invert onto work surface; gently pat into a 3/4-inch-thick patty. Repeat procedure with remaining crab mixture, forming 8 cakes.

3.     3. Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 4 crab cakes to pan; cook 4 minutes or until bottoms are golden. Carefully turn cakes; cook 4 minutes or until bottoms are golden and crab cakes are thoroughly heated. Remove cakes from pan; keep warm. Wipe pan dry with paper towels. Heat remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in pan. Repeat procedure with remaining 4 crab cakes.


·         1/4 cup canola-based mayonnaise

·         1 tablespoon chopped shallots

·         1 1/2 tablespoons capers, drained and chopped

·         2 teaspoons Creole mustard

·         1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

·         1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper

·         1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

To prepare rémoulade, combine 1/4 cup mayonnaise and remaining ingredients in a small bowl; stir with a whisk. Serve with crab cakes.

OR, do what I did and combine a bit of these two ready-made goodies to taste.  Excellent.  

Sunday, March 17, 2013


I adore the grounds of Rousham.  I think it is my favorite English garden.  It's been ages since I've posted anything--shoulder surgery, old job ended, new job started.  So on this beautiful Sunday afternoon, I thought it was time to post something and selfishly, I wanted to take a little walk through Rousham on a cloudy day, because I'm here in Arizona on a sunny 82 degrees day.

The Rousham garden is the work of William Kent.  One of the things famous about Rousham is a letter written by a gardener by the name of Clary who worked with Kent and later wrote to the newest Rousham owner.  The letter is a written guided tour describing the beautiful grounds to the absent owner, in hopes that he would appreciate the beauty and be tempted to visit.

                                          Gorgeously restored bench - six in all

Our tour of Rousham was led by my Oxford tutor, Richard Bisgrove.  He read bits and pieces from Clary's letter as we roamed the grounds and now I am realizing I need to get a copy of that letter.

                                                                   Rousham House

                                                                    The Gladiator

                                                               This urn is perfection

                                                         The Praeneste Terrace

                                         Look at those wall colors! And isn't that bench glorious?

                                                                  A tempting path

                                              A pretty garden rill winding through the grounds                                                                

                                                Arches and gates make my heart leap

                                                Arches and urns also make my heart leap

                                                       Another refreshing water feature

                                                            A peek at the big house

               Killer combo of mottled walls, cascading roses, purple and white lupine, chartreuse leaves.                        

                                                   Yellow roses climbing up the dovecote

                                           (Never peek or breathe inside an active dovecote)

                                                           Spectacular orange flowers
                                               This little tour was just what I needed today