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Cooking with Rebecca Bent

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Panko Breaded Crab Cakes

Once you have perfected the basic recipe for panko breaded crab cakes you can really add whatever seasonings or ingredients you want to mix it up. Great suggestions are a dash of hot sauce, pickle relish, minced pimento, minced red or green jalapeño pepper. But don't stop there, experiment and have some fun. If I am trying a new ingredient that I am not sure will be a hit, I create the basic recipe and only make up one experimental crab cake.

Panko Breaded Crab Cakes (The basic recipe)
Makes 4 heaping servings

1 large egg, beaten
4 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 cup panko, plus 1 cup in a shallow wide bowl
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon coarsely chopped fresh chives (or your favorite fresh herb)
1 teaspoon coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 teaspoons seafood seasoning or Old Bay
1 pound lump crab meat, picked over for shells and cartilage
Vegetable oil for deep-frying

In a medium bowl, combine the egg, mayonnaise, 1 cup panko, salt, lemon zest, chives, parsley, and seafood seasoning. Mix well. Gently fold in the crabmeat. Avoid over-blending. Form the mixture into 2-inch crab balls and set them on a platter. They will be wet and that's ok.

Set a large skillet over medium heat. Add in 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil. When it starts to shimmer in the pan, it is ready.

Pick up the crab ball and gently press the top and bottom into the bowl of panko to coat. Transfer it to the pan to fry. The ball shape will now resemble a crab cake. Add in as many crab cakes that you can without overcrowding the pan. Fry the crab cakes until lightly crispy, or about 2 minutes per side. Serve as is, tucked into a sandwich or omelet, or on a bed or lettuce with your favorite tartar sauce.


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