Crab Shack-a-Lackin’

Tired of the same old sandwich? I know I am! I was craving a sandwich one day, but not just any sandwich.  I didn’t want deli meat, tuna salad, mayo or mustard.  I wanted something savory and hot but I didn’t want a hamburger.  All of a sudden it hit me: CRAB CAKE SANDWICH.  It was a perfect Summer food: light, savory and most importantly delicious.  If you make crab cakes from scratch you can ensure that they won’t be made up entirely of filler (bread crumbs or panko) and you can keep them healthy.  Using fresh crabs is the best but if you don’t live near a fish market prepackaged crab meat at your local grocery store will work fine.

This was my first attempt at making crab cakes and it seems pretty fool-proof.  I messed up myself and they still came out delicious.  I like spicy food so in the crab cake mixture I minced half a jalapeno.  I also diced up some green pepper to give the crab cake a little crunch.

Now the main decision you have to make when assembling crab cakes is whether you are going to use bread crumbs or panko.  Panko is a Japanese bread crumb that is flaky and crunchy in texture.  Many people believe that panko works better when you are trying to create a crisper and lighter crust of a food item than bread crumbs.  If you have ever had tempora or some asian dish that has been fried, those foods are almost always coated with panko.  Panko is also known to absorb less oil than bread crumbs when you are pan-frying.  For these two reasons I decided to use panko crumbs (plus the word panko sounds cooler, just say it pankooh yeah).

So I used panko, it made the outside of the crab cakes crispy and light while keeping the cake moist on the inside.  Two pieces of advise for all of you ready to jump in the kitchen and make these scrumptious, titillating guys.  First, refrigerate the patties after you’ve formed them but before you’ve put them in the skillet to keep them from falling apart.  Second, handle them very carefully when in the skillet because otherwise they will fall apart on you.  Crab cakes work for any occasion and can be presented in a number of different ways: appetizers, main courses, sandwiches, side dishes and there are a number of different ways to make them.

I made my crab cake sandwiches by putting tartar sauce and Sriracha on both sides of the bun and using a generous amount of lettuce and tomato.  Very attractive sandwiches I have to say.  Okay, now stop salivating over these pictures and make your own crabby beauties–these are so easy to make, trust me.

Crab Cakes

1 lb fresh lump crabmeat

1/4 cup low-fat mayonnaise

2 green onions thinly sliced

1 egg beaten with an additional egg set aside

1 Tbsp Dijon mustard

2 tsp fresh lemon juice

1 1/2 tsp old bay seasoning

3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs with an additional 1 cup set aside

half a green pepper diced

half a jalapeno minced

4 Tbsp vegetable oil

Instructions

In a bowl mix the lump crab meat and the beaten egg.   Let that sit for about 10 minutes, it will help with  the binding process.  In a separate bowl combine mayo, green onion, green pepper, jalapeno, Dijon mustard, lemon juice and Old Bay Seasoning.

After the 10 minutes of letting the beaten egg and lump crab meat sit, add mixture to other bowl and combine along with 3/4 cup of panko.  Divide the mixture into 6 large patties.  place patties on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper and place in the fridge for at least 20 minutes.  This process will help keep the patties from breaking apart.

While the patties are in the fridge, beat another egg in a flat bottom dish big enough to fit the patty and in a second flat bottom dish place the additional 3/4 panko breadcrumbs.  Take the crab cakes patties out of the fridge and get ready to place each patty one at a time first in the egg dish, cover completely, and then in the panko dish covering the patties completely.

heat a skillet with 2 tbsp of vegetable oil on medium to medium-high heat.  Gently place patties into the skill once the oil slightly smokes.  Let the patty brown before flipping it. This should take about 2-3 minutes on each side.  Once first batch of crab cake patties are cooked place more oil in the skillet.  Once the patties are done set aside.  take the bun of your choice and spread tartar sauce on either side and spread some Sriracha on one side of the bun.  add the crab cake patty and top with tomato and lettuce of your choice (I used Spinach).  Grab the sandwich and take a giant bite.  Enjoy.

Now that is a pretty big sandwich!

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