Yield: Yields eight crab cakes.
In 1980, I was hired as the chef for a brand-new restaurant called Café Sport, and from the first draft of the menu, Dungeness crab cakes were a centerpiece. I still serve the very same ones at my own restaurant, Etta’s Seafood, 26 years later. They’re the most popular item on the menu.
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Make Ahead Tips
You can shape the crab cakes up to 24 hours before you cook them.
To make mini cakes, shape the crab cake mixture into 24 small cakes, about 1 heaping Tbs. each. Cook the crab cakes as directed in the recipe in batches of as many cakes as will fit comfortably in the skillet without crowding, and cook 2 to 3 minutes per side.
I made a 6x version of this recipe for my mother in law's retirement party and it was a huge hit with lots of people asking for the recipe (ditto for the Red Eye Cocktail Sauce recipe). As others have mentioned the mixture is very wet and a challenge to work with but the results are worth the effort. I found it easiest to make smaller cakes than called for and to use my hands rather than a spatula for moving the cakes around. During cooking I used a spatula on top and bottom of the cakes while flipping to help keep them together. The crab cakes held well in a 200 degree oven for ~40 minutes while I cooked the multiple batches. I will definitely be making these again.
This is the second time I've made these. The flavour is great and I like the fact that apart from the crab (which I can have canned in the fridge for months), it's pretty much all pantry items. My husband is a huge crab-cake fan and absolutely loves it when I make these, but I find it frustrating that they fall apart so easily when I flip them in the skillet (and also when we're eating them). This time I added some bread crumbs to the crab mixture, to try to firm them up (as you would with hamburgers), but the result was the same - nice and firm out of the fridge, but so floppy in the skillet that they were a challenge to flip. Next time I might try chilling them for more than the hour suggested. Or use all the butter to fry - I used only 1 Tbsp each time, that might be the problem. Either way, I'll definitely make them again. I agree with other reviewers that you don't need that many breadcrumbs - a half-recipe would be enough.
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