Lobster-Crab Cake with Basil Sauce and Lemon-Habanero Tartar Sauce

April 8, 2014
Dinner, Lunch, Seafood, Vegetables

Serves: 4

Basil Sauce
½ cup packed fresh basil leaves
1 cup prepared mayonnaise
¼ cup white wine vinegar
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Combine basil, mayonnaise, vinegar, ¼ cup of water in a blender and blend until smooth, season with salt and pepper. If sauce is too thick, add a bit more water, a tablespoon at a time. The sauce should be slightly thick but pourable. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld. The sauce can be made 8 hours in advance and stored, covered in the refrigerator.

Lemon-Habanero Tartar Sauce
2 cups fresh lemon juice, plus 1 tablespoon fresh
½ habanero chile
2 teaspoons clover honey
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1 cup prepared mayonnaise
2 anchovies, drained and mashed with a fork to a paste
4 cornichon, finely diced
2 teaspoons capers, drained

1. Combine the lemon juice and habanero in a small saucepan and cook over medium-high heat until reduced to about 1/3 cup, whisk in the honey. Remove let the mixture cool to room temperature. Remove the habanero just before adding to the mayonnaise and discard.

2. Whisk together the mayonnaise, anchovies, cooled lemon syrup, lemon juice, lemon zest in a medium bowl. Fold in the cornichon and capers and season with pepper and just a touch of salt to taste.

Lobster-Crab Cake
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 small red onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 small jalapeno, finely diced
½ cup prepared mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoon whole grain mustard
¾ lb coarsely chopped lobster meat
¾ lb jumbo lump blue crab meat
2 to 3 tablespoons Wondra flour
¼ cup finely chopped fresh flat leaf parsley leaves
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 cups Panko breadcrumbs
Canola oil, for sautéing

1. Heat the 2 tablespoons of canola in a small saute pan over medium heat, add the onions and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and jalapeno and cook for 1 minute longer. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and let cool for 5 minutes.

2. Add the mayonnaise and mustards to the bowl and mix to combine. Fold in the lobster and crab meat and add Wondra, 1 tablespoon at a time just until the mixture binds slightly. Add the parsley and salt and pepper and gently fold to combine. Cover and refrigerate the mixture until cold, about 1 hour.

3. Divide the mixture into 8 equal portions and form each portion into a patty. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment or aluminum foil, cover and refrigerate again for 30 minutes. The mixture is very delicate because it does not have a lot (or any) filler such as bread crumbs, etc.

4. Spread the panko evenly on a baking sheet and season with salt and pepper. Dredge the crab cakes in the mixture on both sides and tap off the excess.

5. Heat ½ cup of oil in a large nonstick saute pan over medium heat until it begins to shimmer; saute the cakes on both sides until golden brown and the center is heated through. Remove to a plate lined with paper towels to blot excess oil.

6. Put some of the basil sauce on the bottom of each plate, top with 2 cakes, top each cake with a dollop of the lemon habanero sauce and garnish with parsley sprig. Drizzle around the plate with red chile oil, if desire.