Servings: 6 servings
1 whole fresh crab (or store-bought already cooked, cleaned and cracked crabs)
¼ cup leeks (white part only), finely chopped
½ cup carrots, boiled and diced
1 cup frozen green peas, thawed
¼ teaspoon red chili powder
1 tablespoon dill pickles (or relish), finely chopped
½ teaspoon paprika
¼ cup flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
3 slices white bread, crustless and chopped
3 tablespoons milk
juice of half a lemon
½ teaspoon black pepper, freshly cracked
1½ teaspoons salt
2 eggs, lightly beaten
½ cup vegetable oil, as needed
½ cup mayonnaise
½ teaspoon Tabasco sauce
Prepping the crab:
Clean the crab, brush and rinse thoroughly. Place in a pot, add about 1½ to 2 cups of water and boil for about 10 minutes (see tips). Transfer to an ice water bath for about 3 minutes to stop the cooking process. Drain and discard all the liquid.
Remove and discard the abdominal flaps (the triangle-shaped tail). Lift and separate the back-fin with the rest of the claws by placing a large tablespoon at the bottom of the crab. Remove and discard the "lungs" (also known as Devil's fingers; they have a spongy texture and are inedible).
Gently remove the crab meat from the back-fins (the inner chambers are filled with meat) by "shaking" the crab. Note: Maman just sent me this cool link and it's a lot faster to gather the crab meat!
Gather all the crab meat in a large mixing bowl, reserving the red pieces for garnish. Add lemon juice. Toss well.
For the mayonnaise: In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise, paprika, Tabasco sauce, Worcestershire sauce and pickles. Mix well.
Making the crab cake mixture:
Moisten the bread with milk. Mix well, then add to the crab. Add the parsley, 6 tablespoons mayonnaise, red chili powder, carrots, peas and the eggs.
In a pan, heat 2 tablespoons oil. Add the leeks and cook for 6 minutes until golden. Transfer to the crabcake mixture, leaving as much oil as possible in the pan. Season with salt and pepper.
Checking the seasoning: In a small pan, heat about 1 teaspoon of canola oil. Add about 1 to 2 tablespoons of the crab cake mixture. Cook for about 2 minutes. Taste the crab and adjust the seasoning with more salt and pepper if necessary. Set aside.
Preheat the oven to the lowest setting (about 200°F).
Heat a non-stick skillet. Add oil. Once the oil is hot, lower the heat. Place a 2¾" metal circle cutter onto the skillet. fill the circle cutter with the crab mixture and make sure it's tightly packed. Delicately remove the circle cutter and repeat the same procedure until they're all cooked. Once one side is cooked (about 2-3 minutes), flip the other side and continue cooking until lightly golden, transfer to a plate and set aside.
Transfer the crab cakes to the oven for 5-10 minutes at 200°F (to keep them warm) until ready to serve.
Transfer the crab cakes onto a serving platter. Garnish with the reserved crab.
Top each crab cake with a dollop of mayonnaise and sprinkle with chopped parsley.