Summer is upon us and in this part of the country, that means some of the sweetest and most delicious seafood is being pulled from the ocean. Lump crab meat is available and plentiful. I could not resist making some delicious crab cakes and trying them out in the air fryer to see how it would work! This is a super simple recipe as all crab cakes should be and I know you will love it’s simplicity and delicious flavor.
Crab cakes can be a point of contention if you inhabit a coastal area. There is the bread crumb crowd and the cracker crowd. The pan fried ilk and the baked. There are likely as many recipes for crab cakes as there are people making them. Truthfully there really isn’t a wrong way but there are rules to follow. Simple they may be, they are few, but should be adhered to in order to get the best result.
I have used two pounds of crab here in my video. You can cut it in half and use only one pound or double, triple or quadruple it if you like. The choice is yours. Everything is easy to adjust. The most important thing is that you start out with good quality crab meat. If you are fortunate enough to live near the coast or somewhat near a crab bearing body of water, you know how great crab can be. On the east coast you will find plenty of blue crab and stone crab, which are normally only fished for their extra large claws and then thrown back in. Blue crab are the most plentiful here. On the west coast their cousin the Dungeness is the preferred catch. No matter, you will want to seek out hand picked, fresh as possible lump or jumbo lump crab meat to make these cakes. I sometimes like to mix back fin meat with lump to get a nice crab cake that does not cost too much. This day I could only get lump or jumbo lump so, we went with lump. It was not cheap at $18 a pound, but so worth it. If you only do this once a year, it really makes a difference to have the best quality crab. You can also choose to mix a pound of jumbo lump and a pound of lump for a great textured crab cake.
To start off with I made the binding agent which is one egg per pound, 1/4 cup of mayo per pound of meat and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. Whisk this up and then add in your crab, about a cup of buttery cracker crumbs. I used club crackers but Ritz work great. You can use what you have and if you prefer you can use dried bread crumbs or panko as well. I added red bell and green bell pepper, onion and celery all chopped very fine to the mix. You can forego the veggies if you prefer. I left some out for my youngest who does not like them.
Add your crab meat to a separate bowl and gently look it over making sure to remove any errant shells that you find. Remember this is picked by hand and there is a margin of error. For the most part mine was extremely clean. Add the crab to the bowl with the sauce and the veggies and mix everything up very gently. You want this to come together and not be watery so if you see that it is, add more cracker crumbs, but not too many. You want this to just come together. Allow this to sit in the fridge for half an hour then get ready to patty these up.
I made mine in half cup portions so four ounces each. Then I let them sit in the fridge for 10 minutes to firm up. Placed them in the air fryer for 12 minutes and they came out perfect! I was super impressed and honestly did not have high hopes. But they were awesome!
These can also be pan fried in a shallow amount of oil on both sides for a few minutes till brown and crispy, or baked in a 350 degree oven for 15 to 18 minutes. If you have an air fryer, totally give this a try! I hope you do and I hope you love it!
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