Panini Girl

My obsessions-Italy and Cooking

March 10, 2014


Curried Crab & Scallop Cakes


What is it about crab cakes? I see them on a menu and feel that I have to give them a go. I walk into a party and someone is passing a tray and I’m right there and I’m taking more than one. Is that okay?

I’m a fool for crab cakes and have been looking for an excuse to make these Asian inspired ones that I found on Food 52. We hosted our almost twenty year old “wine dinner” (I’ve written about our dinners here and here and here) on Saturday night and even though the rest of the meal was Italian (are you surprised?), I had to serve these crab cakes as a starter.

I’ve been using a recipe from the Barefoot Contessa for years and they are absolutely delectable but I was drawn to this recipe when I saw that curry was included. I am partial to crab cakes that have almost no “filler” and so rather than using the 1 cup of panko that’s called for in the recipe, I used a half a cup as the scallops help to hold the cakes together. The finished product isn’t overly “Asian”, but the curried mayonnaise for dipping is slightly addictive and with the leftovers of this dipping sauce I’ll be making curried tuna salad.

Curried Crab & Scallop Cakes

½ pound scallops (sea or bay work fine)
½ pound crab meat
red bell pepper
4 green onions
1 cup panko, plus additional for dredging (1 ½ to 2 cups)
1/3 cup curry and lime mayonnaise, plus additional if needed
¼ cup chopped cilantro
1 ½ teaspoons sweet curry powder
1 teaspoon lime zest
¼ teaspoon Diamond kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
Canola oil for frying

Curried Mayonnaise

1-3/4 cups best quality mayonnaise (I use Best Foods/Hellmans)
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 teaspoon sweet curry powder
1 teaspoon lime zest
1/8 teaspoon cayenne

To make the mayonnaise whisk together all ingredients in a small bowl until thoroughly combined. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Place scallops in food processor. Pulse until finely chopped and a bit paste-like, with pieces no larger than ¼-inch remaining. (The paste-like texture will help in binding the cakes.) Transfer to a medium-large bowl. Break large pieces of crab up with your fingers, and add to the bowl with the scallops.

Finely dice ½ cup of red pepper, you want pieces no larger than 1/8th inch so they incorporate well, and don’t hamper the cakes from binding. Add the pepper to the bowl. Cut the roots off the green onions, then slit the white and light green parts lengthwise. Cut the onions crosswise into thin half-moons. Cut enough of the dark green parts so when measured you have a total of ¼ cup green onion. Add the onion to the bowl. Add panko, mayonnaise, cilantro, curry powder, lime zest, salt, and cayenne to the bowl. Mix gently, but thoroughly.

The mixture should be moist and sticky. Add an additional tablespoon or two of mayonnaise if necessary. Gently roll heaping tablespoon portions into balls. Roll the balls in the panko and flatten slightly so they are about ½-inch thick. They should be bite-sized, so scale up or down if needed. Set formed balls aside on a plate or tray. Heat about ¼-inch of canola oil in a 12-inch frying pan over medium heat. You want a piece of panko dropped into the oil to bubble, but not furiously.

Fry about a dozen bites at a time until golden-brown on the bottom (about 3 minutes.) Turn them and fry the other side until it is also golden-brown. Tranfer bites to a large paper towel lined plate. Fry remaining bites in batches, adding additional canola oil between batches to maintain ¼-inch depth. Serve immediately.

You can make these ahead of time if you want. Allow to cool to room temperature then transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. To reheat: Remove the tray from the refrigerator and preheat your oven to 350º F. Uncover the tray, and bake for 8 to 10 minutes until heated through.

6 thoughts on “Curried Crab & Scallop Cakes

  1. Looks great! I love crab cakes. They’re probably really good mies with scallop! Thanks for the recipe. – Greg from “Meals and Reels”

  2. I’m totally with you when it comes to crab cakes…I love them. This recipe will be a “must try”.

  3. I am one of those lucky enough to enjoy these incredible crab cakes. They were incredible.

  4. They were AWESOME…the sauce was spectacular, bursting with flavor

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