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Asian Crab Cakes with Mango Chutney

Asian Crab Cakes with Mango Chutney


Mango chutney:

1/2 cup sugar
1 mango, pitted, peeled, and cut into 5 mm dice
1/4 cup unseasoned rice wine vinegar
2 Tbs fresh lime juice
Sea salt

Crab cakes:

1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 large egg
2 Tbs Thai or Vietnamese fish sauce
1 Tbs peeled and minced fresh ginger
1 Tbs finely chopped fresh coriander
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
1-2 tsp seeded and finely chopped medium red chilli
1/2 tsp sea salt
Finely grated zest of 1 lime
1/4 cup finely chopped spring onions, white and green parts
500g crab meat, picked over for cartilage and shells, well drained
1 1/2 cups Panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
6 Tbs canola oil
60g unsalted butter
1/2 Lebanese cucumber, sliced into thin rounds, and then into matchstick-sized strips
Fresh coriander sprigs, for garnish
Flaky sea salt, such as Maldon or fleur de sel, for garnish


To make the chutney:

Heat a medium heavy saucepan over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add the sugar and cook without stirring, tilting the pan as needed so that the sugar cooks evenly, for about 5 minutes, or until it melts into an amber caramel. Do not stir or the caramel will crystalise.

Remove from the heat and stir in the mango (the caramel will seize), then the rice vinegar and lime juice. Return to medium heat and stir constantly for about 5 minutes, or until the mango is translucent and the caramel is dissolved and syrupy.

Transfer to a bowl and let cool. Season with salt.

To prepare the crab cakes:

In a large bowl, whisk the mayonnaise, egg, fish sauce, ginger, coriander, sesame oil, chilli, salt, and lime zest together, then whisk in the spring onions. Add the crab meat and stir to coat, coarsely breaking apart the crab meat, leaving small whole chunks in the mixture. Fold in the Panko. Cover and refrigerate the crab mixture for 30 minutes so that the mixture is easier to form.

Using about 1/3 cup of the crab mixture for each cake, shape into twelve 2cm-thick crab cakes and place on a baking tray.

To cook the crab cakes:

Pre-heat the oven to 95 C (75 C fan-forced). Line a baking tray with paper towels. Heat a large non-stick sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add 3 tablespoons of the canola oil and 2 tablespoons of the butter and heat until hot but not smoking.

Working in two batches, fry 6 crab cakes for about 2 minutes on each side, or until crisp and golden, adjusting the heat as needed to brown evenly without scorching.

Transfer to the baking tray and keep warm in the oven. Wipe out the pan with paper towels and repeat with the remaining canola oil, butter, and 6 crab cakes.

To serve, place 2 crab cakes on each of six plates. Spoon some of the mango chutney over and alongside the crab cakes. Top each with the cucumber and garnish with the coriander sprigs and sea salt.

Credits: 'What's for Dinner?' by Curtis Stone, Published by Random House Australia