Spring has a way of inspiring us to let go of things in our home we don’t need and to put more thought into what we bring in. With these thoughts in mind, I felt motivated to give a more meaningful birthday gift to my husband, Nate, rather than bring more things into our home.
There is no better gift than time spent together in a beautiful place. Add to that a menu of the guest of honor’s favorite meals, coffee, music, and perfect sunsets on the beach, and you have a birthday getaway for the memory books.
VINTNER'S COTTAGE BY MEREDITH LODGING
Vintner’s Cottage, Bella Beach: This quaint community is a picture-perfect family vacation spot with everything you need to make your stay feel like home.
- Sleeps 10
- Four bedrooms
- Three bathrooms, one half bath
- Cozy fireplace in living room and master
- Hot tub surrounded by trees
- Computer/office area
- Exercise room
- Wine cellar (select a bottle during your visit)
- Carriage house
- Two-minute walk to the beach
TRAVEL TIPS: YOU SAY IT'S YOUR BIRTHDAY
- Know your crowd. When selecting a vacation rental for a specific celebration, keep the guest of honor in mind when choosing. Pick amenities the birthday guest can enjoy.
- Plan a favorite meal. My husband is a huge seafood fan. Barnacle Bill’s Seafood Market made meals on this getaway easy and delicious.
- Fun finds. In the garage of Vintner’s Cottage we found a Radio Flyer trike for the little one and a beach cruiser — such a fun way to adventure through the sweet neighborhood.
BIRTHDAY BACON CRABBY CAKES
- 2 oz. bacon, cubed
- 1 T butter
- 2 medium-sized diced shallots
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- 2 T Old Bay seasoning
- 1 lb. lump crab from Barnacle Bill’s Seafood Market
- 2 large eggs
- 1 medium lemon, zested and squeezed
- 1/4 C panko breadcrumbs
- 1 1/4 C mayonnaise
- 2 T Dijon mustard
- 3 T whipped cream cheese
- 1/2 C flat-leaf Italian parsley
- 2 T relish
- salt and pepper
- 1 T olive oil
- Sauté bacon in skillet and set aside.
- Sauté butter, shallots, garlic, and Old Bay seasoning on medium heat until shallots are translucent. Transfer to large bowl.
- Add lump crab, bacon, eggs, lemon zest, half of the juice from one lemon, breadcrumbs, 1/4 C mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, parsley and cream cheese.
- Mix together so all ingredients are combined, but do not overmix. Keep the crab in large pieces rather than to the point where it’s shredded.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Combine, 1 C mayonnaise, 1 T Dijon mustard, relish, lemon zest, other half of lemon juice, 1 T Old Bay, and set aside.
- Form the crab mixture into round, flat shapes. Work in hands until each one has structure. This will help keep it from falling apart while cooking.
- Add olive oil to skillet on medium heat.
- Add one crab cake at a time, and do not overcrowd the skillet. Skillet should be hot enough to sizzle slightly as you add each cake.
- Cook three minutes per side or until browned and cooked through.
- Put the cakes on the plate, add tartar sauce and remaining parsley. Make a toast with a nice glass of wine and dig in!
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