So, about two weeks ago, my husband is fetching a bag of veggies from the garage freezer for supper… and he notices that some stuff in the freezer is starting to thaw out, and the compressor isn’t running. Not good.
We try various troubleshooting tactics, but nothing works. That sucker is dead. And it’s over 20 years old, too small and a pain-in-the-butt to defrost. We decide to not fix. Huzzah! Mama gets to buy a new freezer! :)
But it’s going to take Sears a day and a half to deliver the new, bigger, automatic-defrost model, so we pack as much as we can of the still-frozen items into our kitchen refrigerator freezer. Fortunately, my father-in-law lives in town and has a ton of available space in his freezer, so we were able to carry two large coolers worth over to his house. The rest, we keep cold in the refrigerator and cook as quickly as we can in an effort to save as much as possible.
Which leads to today’s recipe:
The World’s Most Expensive Casserole a la Diane
We had an unopened 1.5 lb. box of crab cakes that — while still very cold — were no longer hard frozen. In the course of trying to save them, the bag of crab cakes had been removed from the box and mashed in the refrigerator, so what we were left with was a bag of crab cake mush. (Sounds appetizing, right?)
I needed to cook them right away, so my choices were to either try to re-form them into crab cakes, or do something else. I opted for “do something else.”
I cooked 2 cups of whole wheat elbow macaroni and stirred in the crab cake mush.
I added one can of Progresso Recipe Starters Cooking Sauce, Fire Roasted Tomato flavor and mixed thoroughly.
Just for a little extra flavor, I added a small amount — maybe half, three-quarters of a cup? — of Pepperidge Farm Herb Flavored Stuffing. Because it isn’t an official casserole without the Pepperidge Farm stuffing. Everybody knows that.
Then I turned it in to an 8×8 casserole and covered generously with shredded mozzarella cheese. (Didn’t need to add any other seasoning, because the crab cakes, cooking sauce and stuffing were already seasoned.)
I baked, covered, at 350F for about 45 minutes, and crossed my fingers… because I had no idea whether this would work.
It made a firm casserole that cut nicely into squares. We all sprinkled lightly with lemon juice, and my husband also seasoned with some Cholula hot sauce.
Although the whole family loved it, I told them not to get too attached… frankly, even with lower-end crab cakes, this is one really pricy casserole. But tasty!
So, should you find yourself facing the imminent demise of a large box of crab cakes due to catastrophic freezer failure, now you know one way to salvage them!