Sunday, January 6, 2013

Mini Cream Cheese Crab Cakes

For those of you who have been following my blog, you know my recent delight with crab meat.  I love crab cakes and dishes made with crab meat and have often been disappointed with the quality of the seafood.  Within the past year, I found that buying jumbo lump crab meat at Central Market gave me superb results and buying crab meat from a little street side fish market in Port Aransas, also brought me wonderful results.  This week we tried a few fish items from our local grocery store and since all the fish we purchased was quite fresh, I decided to try the crab meat.  Once again the results were good but not as spectacular as I would have hoped.  It all comes down to the impeccable freshness of the ingredients.  I will try this recipe again with better crab meat since I believe the recipe to be sound.

Mini Cream Cheese Crab Cakes
Makes 24

6 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, divided
1 large egg
1/4 cup sour cream, light or full fat
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives, plus more for garnish
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper or more to taste
8 ounces fresh lump or special crabmeat, picked over, patted dry if overly wet
1 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs, divided
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for pan, melted
Lemon wedges

In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese with a hand held mixer until smooth.  Add 1/4 cup of the Parmesan and egg; beat to blend.  Beat in sour cream, lemon zest, 1 tablespoon of chives, salt, and cayenne pepper.  Fold in crabmeat.  (Mixture can be made 1 day ahead; cover and refrigerate).

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Generously butter a 24-cup mini muffin pan; set aside .

In a medium bowl, toss together the panko, the remaining Parmesan, and the remaining 2 tablespoons chopped chives.  Drizzle the 5 tablespoons of melted butter over, tossing with a fork until evenly moistened.  Press 1 tablespoon of the panko mixture into the bottom of each muffin cup, pressing down with the back of the tablespoon forming a shallow cup.  Divide the crab mixture (about 1 tablespoon) evenly into each muffin cup.  Sprinkle the remaining panko mixture over each cup.

Bake crab cakes until golden on top and set, about 30 minutes.  Cool in the pan for 5 minutes.  Run a knife around each cake and gently life out of the pan.  (Crab cakes can be made 2 hours ahead.  arrange on a baking sheet; let stand at room temperature.  Rewarm in a 350 degree oven for 6-8 minutes)

Arrange crab cakes on a serving platter; garnish with chives.  Serve with lemon wedges and Tabasco.

Recipe from The Galley

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