I set up this blog with three recipes per post to give myself the structure to use recipes from my collection and at the same time make it necessary to find new ones to complete each category. I always have one or two recipes in my repertoire for a certain post, and the fun part is finding new ones to complement them. I keep a huge binder with all of my best recipes and if a new dish fails to make the cut to enter the binder, I won’t post it….even if the photograph turned out really well…which can be annoying. I have a beautiful photo of white gazpacho on my computer that I will never post, or make again, because it wasn’t very tasty. (Still looking for a good recipe if anyone out there has one!)
I am also trying to figure out how to take appetizing photos of some very yummy, but not particularly attractive, dishes. I’ll go ahead and post those, I’m sure, because it is all about the recipes after all.
I guess that the point is that I am having lots of fun, and learning so much about food and photography by keeping this blog, so thanks for checking it out. By the way, I didn’t have to do any research for this post on crab cakes. These three recipes are firmly established in my binder and are there to stay.
Daniel Boulud’s Crab Cake Sandwich
A really special sandwich! Worth the effort! (published in Elle Decor magazine)
1 pound jumbo lump crab, picked over for shells
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
pinch of ginger powder
pinch of ground nutmeg
pinch of cardamom
1/4 teaspoon celery seed
2 pinches cayenne pepper
salt to taste
1 cup good white sandwich bread, cut in 1/8 inch dice, then lightly toasted
6 tablespoons melted butter
1 loaf ciabatta bread
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 head Bibb or Boston lettuce, washed
2 beefsteak tomatoes, sliced
3/4 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons whole grain mustard
1 tablespoon chopped chives
2 tablespoons chopped cornichons
1 teaspoon paprika
dash of garlic powder
dash of cayenne pepper
salt to taste
In a bowl, mix together the egg, mayonnaise, mustard and all of the spices and salt to taste. Add the crabmeat, mix evenly and gently fold in the toasted bread cubes. Shape 6 crab cakes of the same thickness without pressing too hard. Set aside.
In a bowl, mix together all of the ingredients for the remoulade.
Preheat the broiler. Slice the bread into pieces that are 4 inches long. Cut each segment horizontally and brush the cup sides with a little of the olive oil. Toast briefly, open faced, under the broiler, then set aside.
Place the crab cakes on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and brush them with the melted butter, Broil each side for 4 minutes or until golden brown.
Spread some remoulade on the bread and add 1 slice of tomato, a leaf of lettuce and a crab cake. Garnish with a dollop of sauce and an herb sprig to make it pretty!
Oven Baked Crab Cakes with Two Sauces
One of my pet peeves is when a I am reading a cookbook or magazine and the photo of the dish obviously doesn’t match the recipe. Probably the food stylist made a last minute change for the sake of art and the chef was unaware. Well, now I’ve done it myself. I’m going to give two recipes for sauces that I love to serve with these crab cakes, but with all wonderful chaos of summer vacation, I didn’t have time to make them last night. So I threw together a quick substitute as pictured. Still, I want to include the best options and they can be made ahead of time, if you are more organized than I am at the moment.
Note: This is the recipe that I turn to when I want to serve crab cakes to a crowd. ( adapted from The Sea Grill Restaurant)
5 cups cornflakes
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 large egg yolks
2 pounds jumbo lump crab meat, picked over
1/2 stick unsalted butter, softened
In a food processor pulse cornflakes until ground coarse and spread in a shallow baking pan.
In a large bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, mustard, Old Bay seasoning, cayenne, and yolks an add crab meat and salt and pepper to taste, tossing mixture gently but thoroughly.
With a 1/4 cup measure, form crab mixture into cakes and gently coat with cornflakes, transferring as coated to a wax paper lined baking sheet. Chill crab cakes, covered with plastic wrap, at least 2 hours and up to 4 hours. (This is an important step)
Preheat over to 400 degrees. Transfer crab cakes to a large baking sheet. Put about 1/2 teaspoon butter on each crab cake and bake in middle of oven until crisp and cooked through, about 15 minutes. You will need to turn the cakes after about 10 minutes to brown them evenly on both sides. (You will NOT need to add more butter) But it is key to wait until they are golden brown on the bottom before you attempt this. Otherwise the fragile cakes will come apart. Dealing with the fragility of these crab cakes will be worth it when you taste the sweet crab inside…free of the fillers that you so often get in restaurants.
Makes about 20 small crab cakes.
Lemon Dill Sauce
1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill leaves
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley leaves
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 garlic clove, minced
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Refrigerate until chilled. The sauce will thicken as it chills. (recipe from Paula Deen)
Roasted Red Pepper Sauce with Capers and Dill
2 large red bell peppers, roasted and peeled
1 tablespoon fresh dill
1 tablespoon fresh parsley
1 tablespoon drained capers
2 tablespoons sour cream
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
salt and pepper to taste
Puree the peppers, dill, parsley and capers in a processor or blender, maintaining a little texture, Transfer to a small bowl, Add the sour cream, mayo, salt and pepper, Stir until combined. Taste for seasoning. Let stand until needed, about 30 minuted or refrigerate one or 2 days. Bring to room temperature before serving. ( from Teri’s Kitchen.com)
Spicy Asian Crab Cakes
I just love this recipe from Ming Tsai in his book, Simply Ming. As a matter of fact, I love all of his recipes! Sambal is an Asian chili sauce that is available in most supermarkets these days.
2 tablespoons sambal
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons chopped chives
1 teaspoon honey
juice of 1 lime
1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat, picked over for shells and cartilage
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup all purpose flour, for dredging
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup panko
2 tablespoons canola oil
In a small bowl, combine half the sambal, half the mayonnaise, and half the chives, Mix well and set aside, refrigerated. This will be the sauce for the crab cakes.
In a medium bowl, gently combine the remaining sambal and mayonnaise with the honey, lime juice and crabmeat, and season with salt and pepper.
Using a 1/4 cup measuring cup, scoop out 8 portions of the crab mixture and place them on a plate. Wet your hands and form each portion into a cake, packing it tightly
Place the flour, eggs and panko in 3 separate shallow dishes. Dredge the cakes in the flour, dip in the beaten egg, and then dredge with the panko.
Heat a large saute pan over high heat, Add the oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add the cakes, and sear on both sides until brown and crisp, about 3 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels.
Serve with the reserved sauce and garnish with the remaining chives.