Whitstable Weekender

So as tradition now has it we found ourselves back in Whitstable this February half term. Despite being late winter, the sunny days felt more like early Spring.

Food and dog walking are key components of our holidays; a happy cycle of walking off the last meal and building up for the next makes up much of the routine.

Wheelers Oyster Bar delivered a top quality dining experience as usual with morsels such as “confit rabbit fish fingers” served with pancetta wrapped scallops in an oxtail broth.

Gorgeous array of seafood from Wheelers

The crab cakes were so good we had to buy crab meat from the harbour fish shop on the way home in order to recreate what we considered must be the best crab cakes out there.

The crab cake that started it all!

So, armed with a generous pot of local white crab meat, just two Maris piper potatoes and a bunch of spring onions and two red chillies, we went to work!

The trick, we assumed, was to use just enough potato to hold the crab together and not a gram more. Expensive? Not as much as you may think (we paid £9.00 for 500g white crab meat). Good? Oh yes! Delectable.

Trying to recreate them

To accompany our crab cakes we selected a lovely bunch of carrots to roast and simply toss with butter and thyme.

Maybe there’s something about being squeezed into Wheeler’s tiny parlour style dining room, waiting for what you know will be the best meal you are likely to have for weeks or months that makes anything else hard to match, but we were rightfully proud of our creations, and if you haven’t tried this before, give it a go!

Chilli crab cake recipe:

  • 500g cooked white crabmeat
  • 2 large Maris Piper potatoes
  • 5 spring onions, finely sliced
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 fresh red chillies, finely chopped
  • cracked black pepper
  • handful breadcrumbs
  • 25g butter for the mash
  • 1 egg
  • flour, for dusting
  • olive oil, for frying
  • red chilli jelly and rocket leaves, to serve

     Makes about 6 cakes

    Boil the potatoes and mash with the butter and salt. Prepare the ingredients as above. Mix the crabmeat, the chopped spring onions, pepper and chilli. Arrange three bowls: one with flour, one with the beaten egg, and one with breadcrumbs. Divide the mix up into six and make a patty out of each. Coat in flour, followed by egg and finally breadcrumbs on both sides. Repeat for the rest.

    Heat up some light oil in a frying pan and fry until golden on each side approx. 5 minutes.

    John, Emily & the family x