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Sunday, February 10, 2013

Baked Crab Cakes with Garlic, Chili Creme Fraiche Dipping Sauce

Yes folks, I've got crabs...crab cakes that is! Every New Years my family has a crab feast and we gorge and gorge and gorge ourselves on the freshest most delicious crab that we can find. My father orders way more crab than should be legal and we lightly crack each leg and body open before putting the pieces in a "to die for" sauce that my mother concocts to simmer before serving. I don't think more than two words are ever spoken during that meal, more of a symphony of noises like hmmm, ohhhhh, and ahhhh.

This year our crab feast left us with a few stragglers for leftovers and I decided to put them to good use and make a delicious baked crab cake recipe with a creamy garlic, chili creme fraiche dipping sauce that is good enough to eat by the spoonful! These cakes are best made with real crab meat that you can find at any fish counter in almost any grocery store, and Costco actually sells some really great chunk crab meat that would be perfect for this recipe as well. I promise you wont miss frying up these cakes in a pan; they come out of the oven with the greatest crispy crust that locks in all of the juicy smooth flavors waiting on the inside.

Baked Crab Cakes with Garlic, Chili Creme 
Fraiche Dipping Sauce

Baked Crab Cakes-
1 egg, beaten
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Worcestershire
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon hot sauce
1/2 tsp Old Bay seasoning
1/4 capers, drained
1 scallion, finely chopped
1 pound lump crab meant
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup panko bread crumbs

Garlic, Chili Creme Fraiche Dipping Sauce-
1/2 cup Creme Fraiche
1/2-1 tsp garlic chili hot sauce (can be found in the Asian isle of your grocery store)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray. In a bowl mix together the egg, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, Old Bay seasoning and hot sauce. Stir in the scallion and capers. Gently fold in the crab mat, 1/4 cup of panko crumbs and salt and pepper to taste. Place the remaining panko bread crumbs in a shallow dish. Divide the crab mixture into about 8 mounds. Round out each mound and place in panko bread crumbs to fully coat. 

Transfer to your prepared baking sheet and flatten the crab cake slightly. 

Continue until all of your crab cakes are coated and on the baking sheet. Place a very very thin pad of butter on top of each crab cake and place in the oven to bake for 10 minutes. Gently flip each crab cake over and bake an additional 8-10 minutes longer until golden and crispy.
For your dipping sauce simply combine your creme fraiche and chili sauce and taste for heat content and if you desire adding any salt.

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