Healthy Does Happen in Vegas

by Joanne on May 12, 2013

No, we’re not in Las Vegas although it does sound like a great idea.  I was thinking about being on vacation and absolutely trashing a healthy diet.  Why do we do it?  We can surely find ways to celebrate our freedom from work and other stresses while on vacation other than over indulging.  Plus, there are so many great healthy food experiences unique to the places we go.  It’s time to do some taste testing.

Las Vegas, where food and drink seem to offer endless temptation offers top rated, 5 star restaurants and number one Chefs.  This is the place to stay on the healthy trail but make it seem like you’re over fatting, carbing, and sugaring.  Given one recipe, one favorite meal, let’s see how it’s done French Gourmet style.

Crab cakes at Alize

Dining at Alize Restaurant on top of the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas will give any dining guest an experience in gourmet French cuisine. Chef Andre Rochat introduced fine dining to Las Vegas over 20 years ago and offers dishes of fish, meat, and poultry that are sure to dazzle any dinner guest.

When I think of fine French cuisine, I think of rich sauces that are not typically welcome in my health-oriented diet. But Chef’s recipes don’t have to be a diet crashing experience. Check out this delicious crab cake done with sophisticated French elegance and NOTE – No Mayo!

First, remember my version of a delicious crab cake found HERE.

crab cake

Read on for Chef Rochat’s recipe and note the healthy amount of red and yellow bell peppers, giving it a lovely flavor combination appealing to all appetites. This dish is presented as an appetizer in the Chef’s array of fine dining options.

Serves 4,   Prep. Time 30 min.,  Cuisine French,   Vegetarian NO


  • 1 can(s) Dungeness crab
  • 4 oz. red onions
  • 4 oz. red bell pepper
  • 4 oz. yellow bell pepper
  • 2 fl. oz. lemon juice
  • 5 Tbsp. mustard
  • 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 dash Tabasco sauce
  • 7 egg yolks
  • 8 oz. breadcrumbs
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 pinch pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 3 bunches chives


Brunoise red onions and bell peppers by cutting into a julienne (thin strips) and cutting each strip into a tiny dice. (pieces should be 2mm or less)

In large bowl, combine crab, onions, bell peppers, lemon juice, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and Tabasco. Add salt and pepper to taste, little by little.

Using a 6 oz. ice cream scoop, form mixture into balls. Dip each ball in flour, then egg wash, then breadcrumbs. Press each ball into a round cookie cutter to shape into cake.

Heat oil over medium heat in large sauté pan. Sauté cakes about 1 ½ to 2 minutes on each side, until golden. Garnish with chives.

Note:  To brunoise red onions, cut onion in half, and then take flakey outer skin off. Then take off one layer of the onion and cut into long thin strips, and then cut into small dice as stated. Trying to cut a large amount into brunoise for such a small recipe would be unnecessary. For the bell pepper, cut off the top and then take a spoon to core out the seeds. Wash under cool water to get remaining little bits. Cut pepper in half length-wise, then half those pieces again to make it easier to cut into long thin strips, then a small dice again.

The crab meat must be dry, no juice at all.

What are your thoughts on Chef’s recipe?  Why WOULDNT you consider it healthy? And next, why WOULD you consider it healthy?  

I like the way Chef leaves out mayonnaise which I so often see in crab cake recipes.  I LOVE the way he incorporates so many vegetables into the cake.  One last note, the subtle amounts of mustard, Worcestershire, and Tabasco will only bring out more flavor in the rich Dungeness crab meat instead of covering it up.  One change: I would use half egg whites instead of so many yolks.

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1 Comment

  • At 2013.05.13 10:01, misszippy1 said:

    All look like decent ingredients to me, although I’d probably opt for whole wheat bread crumbs. But you are so right, there’s no reason to fall off the health wagon on vacation. We always opt for a condo when we travel so that we can make many of our meals and keep to the program.

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