Crab Cakes with pickled mustard seeds and Meyer lemon aioli
PAIRED WITH: Soter Vineyards Mineral Springs Blanc de Blancs
MEYER LEMON AIOLI:
1 Whole egg plus 2 yolks, room temperature
2 Tbsp. Minced garlic
2 C. Vegetable oil
Juice of 3 Meyer lemons, room temperature
Zest of 3 Meyer lemons
1 tsp. Salt, plus more to taste
White pepper to taste
Set yourself up for whisking; roll up a damp dish towel and shape it into a circle and set onto the counter. Set a large metal mixing bowl on top of it to secure the bowl while you whisk. In the bowl, add your egg, egg yolk, and garlic and mix to combine.
Slowly drizzle the first 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil into egg mixture while whisking constantly. Move on to the next step once the mixture looks glossy. Continue adding the oil in a thin stream, pausing to whisk as you go. Don’t rush this process. The aioli should look silky and a bit fluffy, not separated. If it’s getting too thick, add in 1 tsp. lemon juice and 1 tsp. of water. Keep whisking and adding oil until all of it is gone. Thin the aioli with more lemon and water as needed and whisk in lemon zest. Season with salt and pepper to taste. This aioli tastes best when it has about an hour to rest so the oil from the lemon zest can incorporate into the aioli.
1 Large egg, beaten
⅓ C. Mayonnaise (we love Duke’s for its richness; alternatively, you can keep some of the aioli plain that you make for the lemon aioli)
2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
¼ C. Cornichon pickles, minced
½ tsp. Hot sauce, Crystal or Franks are great options
1 lb. Lump Dungeness crab meat, picked through for shell
¾ C. Breadcrumbs
2 Tbsp. Parsley, chopped
2 Tbsp. Chives, minced
¼ C. Neutral oil for frying
Ikura fish roe for garnish; enough for 1 tsp. for each crab cake
Dungeness crab claw meat, one large piece for each crab cake
Meyer lemon wedges
Freshly ground black pepper
In a small bowl combine beaten egg, mayo, mustard, Worcestershire, cornichons, and hot sauce; season with salt and pepper and set aside.
In a medium bowl mix crab meat with breadcrumbs, parsley, and chives. Fold in egg mixture until fully incorporated. Before you form all of this into crab cakes, take a small amount and pan fry it. Taste it for seasoning and adjust if necessary. Using your hands, scoop crab mixture into eight even balls. Shape into uniform patties and rest on a sheet tray (at this point you can keep in the fridge for up to 24 hours).
Coat the base of a large skillet with oil and place over medium heat. Allow oil to heat until shimmering. Gently place crab cakes evenly across the pan and let crisp up on one side, approximately 3-5 minutes, before flipping and cooking on the other side. Add more oil if necessary to keep browning even. Let rest on a paper towel lined tray to absorb excess oil; To serve: set the cakes on an oval platter (we prefer white or charcoal color to really let the roe and lemon colors pop); top each cake with a dollop of aioli, 1 tsp. Ikura roe, claw meat, pickled mustard seeds and Meyer lemon wedges around the edges.