It’s an unlikely pair but a natural one: All-American crab cakes with romesco, a traditional Spanish sauce of roasted red peppers, garlic, almonds and spices. SHC breaks with tradition by adding smoked paprika – to enhance the charred smoky flavors of the veggies. All in all it’s a winner with freshly made crab cakes as well as on a sandwich or a mix-in with scrambled eggs or with chips as a dip. Easy to whip up and versatile, you might even add it to your summer recipe rotation.
About crabmeat: The best crabmeat for crab cakes is at the fish counter, pasteurized and refrigerated in a can (not canned on the shelf with the tuna). There are several grades of crabmeat and they vary by size along with the price. Jumbo lump is the most expensive but backfin, a combo of smaller pieces, is just as flavorful, less expensive and ideal for crab cakes.
Crab cake cooking secret: A great crab cake has minimal ingredients so the mild and sweet crabmeat flavor can shine through. Treat crab cakes with a delicate touch and chill just before they’re cooked. This will ensure that they hold up in the pan while they get that golden brown crispy crust.
Goes with…. Oven roasted crispy fries, Slow roasted grape tomatoes or Asparagus with fresh ricotta and lemon “mayonnaise”
- 1 large egg
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire
- 1 pound back fin crabmeat
- ½ cup bread crumbs (Panko)
- 2-3 scallions, trimmed and chopped
- 3 tablespoons neutral oil such as canola
- 1 red pepper
- 1 tomato
- 2 garlic cloves in their skin
- ½ cup almonds
- ½ cup bread crumbs (Panko)
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Crab Cakes: In a medium bowl whisk together egg, mayonnaise, and Worcestershire. Gently fold in crabmeat, breadcrumbs and scallions. Shape into six cakes and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- Heat oil in a large skillet until shimmering. Add crab cakes and cook 2-3 minutes per side until golden. Serve warm with Romesco sauce.
- Romesco Sauce: Pre-heat broiler. Cut red pepper in half; remove the stem and the seeds. Place cut side down on a rimmed baking sheet. Cut tomato in half and place cut side up. Place the garlic as is on the baking sheet. Broil veggies 6-8-inches under the heat source, about 5 minutes, until charred. At the same time, place the almonds on a rimmed baking sheet and place in the oven directly under the veggies so they are in indirect heat. This will allow the almonds to toast without burning. Remove the veggies and the almonds and cool slightly. Peel the skin off the peppers and the garlic and place garlic, pepper, tomato and almonds in a food processor. Add breadcrumbs, vinegar and paprika. Whirl until smooth and season to taste with salt and pepper. Makes about 1 ½ cups and will keep in the fridge about 1 week.
Please allow 30 minutes chilling before cooking the crab cakes.