My Moms Mother’s Day Meal. (She Loved It!)

     FROM LEFT TO RIGHT, OF COURSE:

  1. Crab cake topped haddock 
  2. Broccoli Au Gratin 
  3. Seasoned baked potatoes 
  4. Lemon shallot butter.. to pour over our gorgeous golden potatoes before serving.

I wanted to make sure that I had put a lot of thought, and effort into my mom’s mothers day meal! Being that we’re eating at home for basically every single meal.. I wanted it to be special. It was a goal for me to make it different, to make an amazing feast out of everything that she loves. My mom usual orders a fancy seafood dish when we go out to a restaurant, so I knew I had to incorporate seafood into the game! She really enjoys baked potatoes, and broccoli. To make the potatoes unique from just your average crispy skinned potato.. I fried some shallots in lemon butter to drizzle over them when they come sizzling out of the oven. As for the broccoli.. I really wanted to give it a makeover 😉 What goes better with broccoli than a thick, creamy, luscious cheese sauce? It complimented the meal so amazingly. Everything paired with each other was the perfect flavor profile that made for a perfect mothers day dinner.

The crab cake topped haddock is pretty simple, but oh so decadent. For obvious reasons.. you’ll need to start the crab cake filling with a can of jumbo lump crab meat. Before dropping the meat into a mixing bowl, you want to break it apart a bit, and take out any shells that accidentally are laying around! Then put the meat inside of a kitchen towel to squeeze out any water/liquid. That step is necessary!

  • Add a cup of good full fat mayonnaise. 
  • two tablespoons yellow mustard.
  • 1/4 cup of ritz crackers crumbs and 1/4 cub of regular bread crumbs. (I LOVE ritz crackers in crab cakes. It’s buttery, saltiness just makes the dish complete.)
  • Five dashes of hot sauce (not buffalo sauce)
  • Two eggs 
  • A good amount of chopped, fresh parsley.
  • Seasonings– seasoned salt, fresh cracked black pepper, old bay, garlic powder, and dried dill to taste.

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     Mix that delicious seafood goodness all up!

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     Heat one table spoon of olive oil up in a sauté pan on medium heat.

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Sautee three mini tri-colored bell peppers with a half of a small white onion, and one full shallot.

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When the onions, and peppers are translucent.. let them cool, then we can mix it into our crab mixture!

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Just like how we squeezed the water out of the crab meat.. you Diamonds are going to want to do exactly the same thing with the fresh haddock filets! You can achieve that by layering them with paper towels on a paper plate; patting them dry!

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Lay the haddock side by side in a glass baking dish. Pile a thick layer of the crab cake mixture onto each of the fish filets. Be generous with it! It’ll be the best part of the whole thing!!

     How beautiful is this site, and its not even baked yet?!

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To garnish the fish with all the crunchy goodness that it needs, put a small pack of ritz crackers in a bag, and crush it up with a rolling pin, or even your hands will work just fine.

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Before baking the crab cake topped haddock in the oven at 350 for a half an hour.. sprinkle the entire top with crushed up ritz crackers. This will be the perfect crispy, buttery crunch that the fish is longing for!

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    The broccoli au gratin must begin by blanching the broccoli itself. 

  • Blanching – A quick cooking method used to scald a vegetable for a short period of time in boiling hot water. Once it is boiling for only a few short minutes, the vegetable will then be taken out of the pot, and put in an ice bath to fully stop the cooking process.
  • For this particular dish, I am only blanching the broccoli for 3 minutes. I do not want to over cook it considering we’re going to be putting it into the oven after it’s put together with the gooey cheese sauce. 

After blanching.. put the broccoli in a casserole dish, and season, season, season! I always feel that broccoli, or really any good vegetable needs loads of seasoning! 

  • I sprinkled the broccoli with a ton of garlic powder, and seasoned salt. Garlic goes pretty perfectly with broccoli. It is a very great combination! 

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Cheese and broccoli is also another amazing combination, and you’ll need 4 tablespoons of butter to start off the amazing thick, and delicious cheese sauce that the broccoli is going to soak in!

  • Melt the butter on low heat.

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Once the butter has fully melted, whisk in 4 tablespoons of flour to create a roux.

  • A roux is combining a fat with flour! Usually butter is used, but if you want to use oil, or something else that you prefer, you’re welcome to do that. 
  • After the roux has combined into a paste, add two cups of milk. Then whisk in six slices of American cheese. 

Put a couple dashed of salt, and pepper into the mix. Cook for a few minutes to thicken up. The cheese sauce should coat the whisk nicely!

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    Pour the sauce all over the broccoli.

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   Since au gratin means to brown with cheese.. we must layer shredded cheddar cheese all over the sauced up broccoli!

Sometimes when I eat anything that is in au gratin form, I feel likes it’s missing some sort of really good crunch when you bite down into it because most of the time it’s only really full of cheesy creaminess. This one though, I made it a point to add that pinch of crispy saltiness! The best way I figured on doing that was adding potato sticks. These little sticks are so nostalgic to me! They are perfect to elevate any dish!

  • Bake at 350 for 15 minutes just to get the top brown and bubbly!

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Baked potatoes are so simplistic, but yet can be done so wrong. Most people actually go about making baked potatoes the very incorrect way. I mean nothing is illegal here, but you definitely get a much better result by leaving them unwrapped! I don’t know why, or what started it, but everyone thinks that you have to wrap the potatoes in foil. If you want to “steam” a potato in the oven that is exactly what you should do to accomplish that process. Although if you are looking to “bake” a potato, to get crispy, flavorful skin, you are going to want to leave them uncovered.

  • Rules for the most perfect baked potato: They need to get rolled in oil, salt, pepper, garlic salt, and seasoned salt, left un covered!
  • Bake at 400 degrees for one full hour.
  • You will get an absolutely perfect baked potato every single time.

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I decided instead of just putting a pad of butter in the slit of the potatoes when they come out of the oven, I wanted to really fancy up those babies, and do something kind of exciting.

  • First things first.. we still need that decadent butter flavor glazed onto our potatoes, so just begin by melting 2 tablespoons of butter in a small sauce pot.

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On top of the butter, add in two sliced shallots, a pinch of parsley, and the juice of half a fresh spring lemon!

  • The lemon juice is really going to elevate the baked potato, and compliment our crab cake topped haddock amazingly! 

Cook on medium heat and the butter will start to become brown, along with the shallots preceding into the translucent stage.

Your shallot butter will get nice and brown after cooking for ten to fifteen minutes on medium heat.

  • You can turn the heat off and use the butter at this point, but I wanted the shallots some what darker, so I left mine go for a few more minutes!

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Ahh.. that caramelization makes me one happy girl, or shall I say.. blogger 😉 It looks incredibly fancy if you serve this butter in a small farmhouse style gravy boat. It’s all about presentation Diamonds!

  •  Brownness = FLAVOR! Always remember that!

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Our nicely browned, buttery, and moist looking crab cake topped haddock! You literally get the best of both worlds with this fish dish!! The fish is light and flaky, and then you get to experience the amazingness of a thick, crispy crab cake all in one. It doesn’t get any better than that in the seafood spectrum!

Just after those short 15 minutes of getting bubbly.. the broccoli au gratin is glorious! It is just.. truly, glorious! 

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This is exactly what your perfect baked potato will look like!! Brown, golden, crispy, and visibly seasoned with all it’s goodness on there!

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Now if we were actually at a sensational seafood restaurant and bar with our moms on mothers day, we would have for sure been served endless bread and butter to the table! I love bread with a good meal, so you know I had to pair some fluffy, homemade bakery bread with our marvelous mothers day feast!

My mom was so extremely happy with everything that we enjoyed on Sunday that she couldn’t wait until leftovers on Monday night! Lol. So cute of her! Even though mothers day is over, you could certainly recreate this whole menu for a special date night out on the deck, paired with sauvignon blanc. This white wine pairs exquisitely with seafood, especially crab cakes

I’m so happy with how dinner with my mom turned out, and I hope all of you Diamonds had a great day with all of your moms, or loved ones who are mothers themselves. If you are a mom as well.. happy belated mothers day, and I hope you had a very relaxing day! We all deserve that right now!

 

XOXO

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