I can’t believe the last time I updated was in January…and now here we are in May and I come skulking back to you all, dear readers.
Life has been hectic and stressful with a lot of change going on. Since the new year I moved all my belongings and my lovely cat Kobi to my Partner Logan’s flat in Edinburgh, ready for me to move along with them when I found work. Sadly my attempts to find work from a City 4 hours away have been unsuccessful and I’ve really been feeling the pressure as Logan has finally been diagnosed with ME/CFS. So, long story short, after a lot of stressing out, sobbing and uncertainty about what to do, I handed my notice in at the shop I have been working at for the last 5 years, with no job to go to. It’s absolutely terrifying but definitely the best decision I could make under the circumstances.
It was a relief that two days after making this very big and sudden decision, I was due to spend the weekend with Logan here in Edinburgh. It’s been reassuring to be here with him Plus, plenty of cat cuddles from Kobi and Bo has kept me going.
The evening I arrived, Logan met up with some family he has in Canada, who very kindly brought me back two pots of Old Bay Seasoning. This isn’t something you can get over here in the UK, unless you pay a fortune for it, so I was really chuffed that I finally had the opportunity to cook with it. It seems to be pretty popular in a lot of American/Canadian seafood recipes, though I’ve seen a lot of bloggers and vloggers chuck it in all sorts of dishes.
I decided to combine this new seasoning with my approaching House Husband duties and prepare Logan a really delicious and reasonably healthy meal. We have been relying on Farm Foods Chick’n Poppers and my oil laden Mac n Cheese recipe for far too long now.
I looked up some vegan ‘fishy’ recipes and came across a lot of folk using Hearts of Palm as a Lobster substitute. I’ve heard of people using this stuff, but had no idea what it really was, or how easily it can be found here in the UK. Turns out, The Green Giant sell tins of it in most supermarkets (on the top shelf, which explains why I’ve never seen it!) at around £2.10 a can.
So what are Hearts of Palm? Well, they’re a crunchy vegetable that come from certain palm trees. They look a bit like white asparagus, they’re very subtle in flavour, which makes them pretty ideal to play around with for a fish substitute. The texture reminded me a lot like artichokes, I chopped them into slices and rubbed them between my hands, which caused them to flake a bit, perfect for that ‘fishy’ texture.
Anyway, enough going on, here is the recipe for you.
For the mayo:
- 1/4 cup cashews soaked in boiled water for 20 minutes
- 1/4 cup plant milk or water
- 1 tsp cider vinegar
- 1 tsp wholegrain mustard
- 1/8 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp onion powder
- 1/8 tsp white pepper
- pinch of salt
For the Lobster:
- 1 can Hearts of Palm
- 1 large salad or vine tomato
- 1 small packet of roasted nori sheets
- juice of 1/2 a lime
- salt and pepper
- 3/4 tsp old bay seasoning
- Fresh bread rolls
- Old Bay for sprinkling
- While the cashews are soaking, slice the Hearts of Palm before rubbing them through your fingers to flake them up into a bowl.
- Finely chop the tomato and add to the Palm along with the juice, salt and pepper and Old Bay Seasoning.
- Shred the Nori sheets with your hands and stir together.
- Add all of the mayonnaise ingredients into a blender and blitz until smooth. Add more liquid if it’s a little too thick.
- Stir the mayonnaise into the Lobster, taste for seasoning.
- Prepare the rolls by cutting them in half and filling them with lettuce and pickles. Add the Lobster filling and sprinkle a little Old Bay on top before serving.
Oh gosh, this was such a huge success with both myself and Logan. Usually when I prepare something really tasty, all I get from my Scottish Beau is “s’alright”, which apparently is the highest of compliments in Scotland. Yesterday he could not stop going on about how much he enjoyed it, telling me I had “outdone” myself and that he thought it was really delicious. Whilst typing this up, he has messaged me from work to ask me if I will make it again for dinner tonight, which brings me a lot of joy.
I do think a lot of the flavour comes from the Old Bay. Now that I have tried it, I will try some of the recipes for making your own and see how they compare. The main flavours I got were celery salt and paprika/cayenne. If I find a great substitute, I will add the recipe to the blog.
Anyway, best get myself down to the shops before Logan returns so I can make him a big fat ‘Flobster Roll’ as he likes to call it.