Meatout Mondays: vegan crab puffs

Vegan crab puffs before serving them to my guests. Photo by Bethany Fehlinger

Whenever I have to plan a party, I go into manic vegan mode. I always want to cook a bunch of vegan dishes to wow my guests and also feed my appetite. My vegan newsletters usually have awesome suggestions for holidays, and there are even a few vegan cookbooks specifically for holiday cooking (and not just the winter variety.)

What I tend to forget is that I am the only vegan and no one is helping me cook all this stuff. I usually remember this, though, at midnight the night before the big event.

This time, before my thirty-one purse party, I decided to focus on one centerpiece dish — crab puffs. And to make it even better, it would be part of my 50 States, 50 Vegan Dishes series on my personal blog. Check and check!

Crab cakes is under the Delaware list. This state has a special place in my heart, as my family would vacation in Delaware (Bethany Beach!) often when I was growing up. I miss going down there, and I am hopefully planning a trip for this summer.

But back to the recipe. I didn’t have a lot of time to create these crab puffs, and if you wanted them to look more like hushpuppies, that wouldn’t fly. Then I stumbled upon this recipe by Pillsbury and rejoiced. Many of Pillsbury’s products are vegan friendly, which is helpful for making a last-minute pizza or finger food for a party.

These cute little puffs can be a great dish for dinner, paired with a fresh salad or sauteed veggies. It only dirtied two bowls and a cookie tray, and took about 30 minutes to make. What a quick dinner dish for tonight!

Ingredients: 

  • 1 can (8 oz) Pillsbury Crescent Recipe Creations refrigerated seamless dough sheet or (1 can (8 oz) Pillsbury refrigerated crescent dinner rolls, plain variety)
  • 1 can of chickpeas, drained and mashed
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • A dash of hot sauce or chili powder
  • 1/2 cup of Vegenaise (vegan mayonaise alternative)
  • 1 fake egg (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon kelp or other seaweed powder (optional)
  • 3/4 cup of shredded vegan cheddar cheese (Daiya brand used)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped plum/Roma tomato
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped green onions
  • 1 tablespoon vegan margarine (Earth Balance used)

Recipe:

  1. In a medium bowl, pour in drained chickpeas and mash until desired consistency.  Add garlic and hot sauce or chili powder and stir. (If you have kelp powder or another seaweed powder and want a more sea-like taste, add a generous teaspoon.)
  2. If using fake egg, follow directions on the container and make one egg. (I used Vegg, which gave the dish an eggy flavor. But it is not needed to keep the filling together.) Add Vegenaise to the bowl and mix.
  3. Pour egg/mayo mixture into chickpea mixture. Stir.
  4. Add chopped tomato, green onions and vegan cheddar cheese. Stir until incorporated. Set the bowl aside.
  5. Heat oven to 375°F. In small bowl, mix melted butter. Wipe your cookie pan with oil or use a vegan nonstick cooking spray.
  6. If using dough sheet: Unroll dough on sheet; press into 12×8-inch rectangle. If using crescent rolls: Unroll dough on sheet; press into 12×8-inch rectangle, firmly press perforations to seal.
  7. Cut into 2-inch squares. Brush with butter.
  8. Bake 4 to 6 minutes or until puffed. Take out and let cool for 1 minute.
  9. Spoon a generous tablespoon of chickpea mixture on each square.
  10. Bake 10 to 12 minutes longer or until golden brown and tops are set. Serve warm.
Do you have any recipes for Meatout Mondays? Send them to bfehlinger@ydr.com.

About Bethany Fehlinger

Bethany Fehlinger is a journalist in the Design Center at the York Daily Record. She is a graduate of Penn State University, is a York City dweller and has been vegetarian and geek for more than five years. Twitter: @Wonder_veggie
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