" Crush, The" Unrequited

Spurned by the one you adore? There is no better cure for a broken heart than a full belly. These rich medallions are made by rolling Middle Eastern crackerbread together with various seafood and seasonings. Filled with crabmeat, salmon roe, avocado and a touch of mayo, these appetizing treats are perfect for luring back that lost love. After all, the way to a man?s heart is through his stomach! (Of course, if he really spurned you, you may want to find a quicker and more painful route.)

You will need:

  • 3 large "lovash" cracker bread (also spelled lahvosh/lavosh, found in large supermarkets, Middle Eastern specialty stores and gourmet food shops)
  • 2 teaspoons plain gelatin
  • 1/4 cup cold water
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 2-4 teaspoons hot chili oil
  • 1 medium red onion, finely diced
  • 4 stalks celery, finely diced
  • 1 lb. cooked crabmeat
  • 2 ripe avocados
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 3 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 cup softened cream cheese
  • 2 ounces salmon roe
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh basil
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 restraining order, as needed

Directions:

1. (If you purchased pre-softened cracker bread, please proceed to step 2.) Rinse four large, clean kitchen towels with warm water. Wring out one towel and lay flat on a clean countertop. Carefully remove one lahvosh from its wrapper without breaking it and place directly on the moistened towel, then place another damp towel directly on top of it. Repeat with the remaining towels and cracker bread, one on top of the next until each lahvosh is covered by a damp towel. Let the cracker bread sit and soften at least 30 minutes, spraying with water occasionally to keep the towels moist, as you continue with the next two steps.

2. Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water in a small saucepan. Once the gelatin softens, heat the mixture over medium heat for 1 minute, until very warm to the touch, but not boiling. Immediately whisk the warm mixture into the mayonnaise; add the chili oil and continue whisking until thoroughly mixed.

3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the onion, celery, and mayonnaise mixture. Fold in the crabmeat, season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper; set aside. Peel, pit, and slice the avocado into 1/2" slices. Toss with the lemon juice and set aside.

4. Carefully remove one of the softened lahvosh from the towels and lay out flat on a clean work surface. Coat each lahvosh with a thin layer of cream cheese and sprinkle with fresh basil. Next, evenly spread one-third of the crab mixture over the cream cheese, leaving a 1-inch border around the edges. Top the crab layer with a little salmon roe, if desired.

5. Lay out the avocado slices end-to-end in a horizontal line across the lower third of the crab mixture and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Starting with the edge closest to you, tightly roll up the lahvosh, jellyroll style. Wrap with aluminum foil and twist the ends tightly. Refrigerate at least 45 minutes and up to two days before unwrapping and slicing into medallions.

6. Make sure to invite at least one obsessed stalker to dinner, then drop a hint that you find it wildly attractive when your guests do the dishes. Once the kitchen is clean, call a cop.

Serves 4



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