Crab Cakes with Homemade Mayo
Crab, like most shellfish, contains protein and is also an important source of zinc. These crab cakes are my light, delicately tasty take on the American classic. Serve simply with a salad and homemade mayo (or a good shop-brought organic one), or some of the wonderful veg in season. If you can’t find fresh crab, tinned crab is a cost-effective alternative.
For the crab cakes:
- 200g mixed crab meat, white and brown
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp English mustard
- 1/8 tsp white pepper
- A pinch of salt
- 3-4 tbsp ground almonds
- 1 tbsp finely chopped parsley
- Light olive oil or clarified butter (ghee) for frying
For the salad:
- 3 handfuls of baby spinach or baby leaf salad
- A quarter of a cucumber, deseeded and sliced
- Lemon wedges for serving
And, if you also fancy making some homemade mayo:
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp English or Dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp light olive oil
- 1 tsp salt flakes
- 220 – 250ml light olive oil
- Juice of ½ a lemon
Beat the egg in a bowl and add the mustard, pepper and salt. Separate the brown and white crab meat, mixing the brown meat, 3 tbsp ground almond and parsley in with the eggs. Stir the white meat in gently so as not to break the lumps. The mix should be moist but ‘spoonable’, if it needs another tbsp. of almonds, stir in now and leave in the fridge to firm up for 20-30 minutes. If you are making homemade mayonnaise, do this now and prepare the salad.
To make the mayo you ideally need a small food processor (a bowl and hand whisk will do but it will take a little longer). Combine the first 5 ingredients well, whizz or whisk and then very, very slowly, drizzle in the remaining light olive oil (do not use extra virgin olive oil here as it is too strongly flavoured). This takes me about 5 minutes with a food processor; if you rush it will not emulsify and be too runny. When it has reached a good consistency, add the lemon juice. This makes more than you’ll need for this recipe but keep in a jar in the fridge and mark up your use by date the same as the egg you used.
Heat a non-stick pan, add oil or ghee and dollop a generous tablespoon of the mix into the frying pan, shaping into little rounds. Fry gently for 2-3 minutes on each side, turning gently as well, until golden.
Serve on a bed of salad with a lemon wedge and a dollop of good mayonnaise.
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