Everyone loves crab cakes, and I have seen several versions of them over the years. I like the following recipe, as it gives a unique flavor profile that is different from the standard Maryland-style that are flavored with Old Bay seasoning. The risotto is the key ingredient to season correctly, as it adds a nice amount of creaminess.
The following recipe makes 10 crab cakes:
1 pound fresh crab meat
1 cup risotto
¼ cup oyster sauce
2 TBSP light soy sauce
1 TBSP fresh ground ginger
2 cups water
2 cloves garlic, chopped
5 sauteed, diced shiitake mushrooms
¼ cup sliced green onions
1 bunch chopped cilantro
¼ cup dijonnaise mix
1 to 2 cups Panko bread crumbs
2 TBSP small diced red & yellow pepper
1 TBSP mixed black & white sesame seeds
* In a sauce pot, bring the risotto, oyster sauce, soy sauce, water, garlic, shiitake mushrooms and green onions to a simmer. Cover and cook over low heat while stirring every 15 minutes. The point here is to end up with fully cooked, soft risotto that is not too salty or sweet. The risotto will take at least 30 to 45 minutes to cook, and when it is done, spread it out on a pan and cool it down to 40 degrees in your freezer or refrigerator.
* In a stainless steel bowl, add the crab meat, dijonnaise, ginger, cilantro, red and yellow peppers and sesame seeds. Mix gently together, then add the cooled risotto mix and gently fold the two together.
* Now add some Panko bread crumbs in order to soak up the excess liquid to firm up the mixture. Do this in three steps, allowing 15 minutes between periods before adding more to avoid adding too much Panko. This will allow the dry Panko crumbs to fully soak up the liquid. You want a mix that is a bit firm, but not too hard - and if you add too much Panko, within 30 minutes, the bread will soak up all extra liquid and turn to cement cakes instead of crab cakes.
* Brown the crab cakes in a pan on medium-high heat with a small amount of Canola oil and cook until 140 degrees in the center. Serve with a favorite slaw or cucumber salad recipe and your favorite tartar sauce.
In this recipe, I made an Asian-style slaw using pre-shredded coleslaw mix, rice, wine, vinegar and olive oil, sherry garlic aioli on the crab cake, and roasted red pepper sauce around the slaw.