Friday, December 3, 2010

Crab Cakes with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

Makes 24 Crab Cakes

12 oz shelled cooked crab 
1/4 cup finely diced celery
1/4 cup minced fresh chives, plus extra for garnish
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 large eggs
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp hot sauce
1 1/4 cups panko

Preheat oven to 475°F. Sort through the crab and discard any bits of shell.

In a large bowl, combine celery, chives, mayonnaise, eggs, mustard, and hot sauce and mix well with a fork. Add crab and 1/4 cup panko; stir gently just to mix. The mixture can now be covered and chilled until needed.

Put remaining 1 cup panko in a shallow bowl. Shape crab mixture into 24 little cakes, about 2 inches wide and 1/2 inch thick. Coat each cake in panko on all sides, pressing gently to make sure crumbs adhere. Place cakes slightly apart on a parchment lined baking sheet.

Bake until golden brown, 15 to 18 minutes. With a spatula, gently transfer the crab cakes onto a platter. Spoon a dollop of Roasted Pepper Sauce onto each cake. Garnish platter with fresh chives. Serve hot.

Roasted Pepper-Chive Aioli: In a small bowl, mix 1/3 cup mayonnaise, 1/4 cup chopped drained canned roasted red peppers, 1 tbsp minced fresh chives, 2 tsp lemon juice, and 1 tsp minced garlic. Makes about 1/2 cup.

COOK'S NOTE: Store bought spicy chipotle mayonnaise works just as well as a sauce for the crab cakes, and saves a bit of time. I buy mine at Mike's Fish at the St. Lawrence Market. It's homemade and excellent value at $2.50/container.

Crab cakes make a lovely lunch and if made as bite size little morsels, make an extra special appetizer. If you're lucky enough to find them pre-made at Summerhill Market or frozen at Manotas in the St Lawrence Market, go for it! They're great. But here's a tasty recipe for homemade baked crab cakes that you can make whenever you want and whatever size you need. Full of fresh crab meat and very little filler, they are truly crab cakes, not carb cakes!

Crab Cakes with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce