Saturday, February 2, 2013

Ultimate Crab Cakes

ultimate crab cakes

In order to have the true ultimate crab cake, you must travel to Baltimore, stop by Lexington Market and hit  up Faidley's Seafood. We go back to the DC-Baltimore-Annapolis area nearly every year to visit family and no trip is complete without savoring their magical crab cakes. Faidley's secret?  Skipping lots of fillers and allowing the taste and texture of super fresh lump crab meat to shine through. 

In honor of the Ravens match up against the 49ers tomorrow, I am serving this crab cake recipe. This is not Faidley's recipe {I will share that one soon} but a delicious crab cake recipe that, like Faidleys, resists the common compulsion to use loads of eggs and breadcrumbs. The devil sauce is literally icing on the cake.

4 oz fresh sea scallops
2 T lightly beaten egg
3 T heavy whipping cream
1 lb fresh, shelled lump crab
2 T diced red bell pepper
2 T diced yellow bell pepper
2 T finely chopped cilantro
2 t green hot sauce, such as Tabasco
3 T finely chopped chives
1/4 t cayenne pepper
1/4 t salt
2 T olive oil
- and for the devil sauce
3/4 c Vegenaise
1/2 t ground coriander
Frank's Red Hot sauce to taste

To make the devil sauce, combine the Vegenaise, coriander and 1 t red hot sauce.  Taste and keep adding more red hot sauce until you get the flavor you like.  Cover and chill in the refrigerator.

In a food processor, pulse the scallops and egg a few times until the scallops are chopped. Pour in the cream and whirl until smooth.

Scrape scallop mixture into a bowl and add the crab, peppers, cilantro, Tabasco and 2 T chives.  Mix and break up most large chunks of crab.

Lay an 18" sheet of parchment paper on a work surface. Divide crab mixture into 6 equal balls and shape each into a cake about 1 1/4 in thick using your fingers to secure the edges. {I covered and chilled the crab cakes for an hour, as I think it helps keep them cohesive}.

Pour the olive oil into a 12: skillet and heat over medium. Using a wide spatula, carefully add the crab cakes to the pan {in 2 batches} and saute for about 4 minutes, until undersides are a light golden color.  Using 2 spatulas or a spatula and a spoon, gently turn the cakes over and cook for an additional 4 minutes or until the undersides are a nice golden brown and crab cakes have cooked through. {If any crab cakes break, don't worry.  They will still taste amazing - less than perfect is the charm of DIY}. Set aside, keep warm and repeat with remaining crab cakes.  Transfer crab cakes to 6 plates and scatter with remaining chives.  Serve with devil sauce on the side.

Serves 6.
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Source:  Sunset, Frederick Basgal

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