The Hippo


May 31, 2020








Dan St. Jean

Uncommon Surf & Turf crab cake

From the Common Man menu, the Uncommon Surf & Turf is a seasoned and chargrilled steak with award-winning crab cake, grilled asparagus and béarnaise sauce. Below is the recipe for the crab cake. Serves four.
Crab cake 
1 pound crabmeat, picked free of shells
⅓ cup crushed crackers (recommended: Ritz)
3 green onions (green and white parts), finely chopped
½ cup finely chopped red and green pepper
¼ cup mayonnaise
1 egg
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon dry mustard
½ lemon, juiced
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt
Dash hot sauce
Flour, for dusting
½ cup vegetable oil
Mix together all ingredients (except for flour and oil) in a large bowl. Shape into patties and dust with flour. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Place crab cakes into hot oil in batches and fry until browned, 4 to 5 minutes each side. Serve warm with preferred sauce.

In the kitchen with Dan St. Jean


What is your must-have kitchen item?

Quality and dedicated staff. To put it as a captain, you can’t lead the ship if you don’t have good followers.
What would you choose for your last meal?
Anything with peanut butter. I’m a peanut butter, peanut fiend. I love something savory. I do a lot of Asian-inspired peanut dipping sauces, peanut butter desserts, peanut butter ice cream. It’s just kind of my thing.
Favorite restaurant besides your own?
Depends if I’m going out with my wife or if I’m going out with the family. They vary. We have so many concepts within our restaurant, so I guess it’s not fair to pick something in our business. If I’m going out with the family, we go to Cactus Jack’s a lot. Very family-friendly. If it’s my wife and I, we like Mint Bistro.
What celebrity would you like to see eating at your restaurant?
Michael Jordan. He always excelled at what he did. … I know he enjoys good food — he has his Michael Jordan’s Steak Houses, he’s in the industry somewhat, too. I’d seen him playing basketball down at the Boston Garden when I was in high school, so to meet and cook for him I think would be fun.
What is the biggest food trend in New Hampshire right now?
I think we’re seeing a lot of the whole farm-to-table. All our restaurants are in New Hampshire up and down the 93 corridor. We as a company try to buy a lot of that local as much as we can. ... Right now we’re buying from Owen’s up in Holderness. 
What is your favorite meal to cook at home?
Being at home, I’m always cooking for the family. I tend to grill a lot. My grill is outside 365 — I actually just got a new one this year because my last one rusted out being out year round. … One of my go-to things is I make this stir-fry, my version I guess of a sesame chicken, but I do a lot of peanut butter in it — that Asian spicy-peanut butter sauce in there.
What is your favorite dish on your restaurant’s menu?
Our braised short-ribs. It’s one of those things where you really need to have the right balance. You need to do that long slow cooking process to get it to be tender, but it’s that right balance of cooking it. ... It’s something that’s a little more skillful that actually only a couple of us do here. … It’s a good four-hour process. — Emelia Attridge 
As seen in the July 10, 2014 issue of the Hippo.

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