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Brunch: Curtis Stone’s Homemade Crab Cakes

Published: February 14, 2013

Crab Cakes with Homemade Tartar Sauce

I don’t know who first had the idea to fuse breakfast and lunch into one spectacular meal, but I applaud this mastermind every time I sit down to brunch. It starts late morning, when we’re hungry and full of energy, and stretches into the lazy hours of the afternoon, making the day feel long and leisurely. And the food! The freedom to combine the best of both breakfast and lunch is a cook’s dream.

Brunch can take awhile, so start slowly with a fresh fruit platter and amazing coffee, then work your way up to omelets and mimosas. These crab cakes make a delectable feature dish at any style of brunch.

Crab Cakes with Homemade Tartar Sauce

(Makes 4 servings)

Curtis Stone

Curtis Stone’s favorite brunch happens outside in the backyard with omelettes, mimosas, and an epic game of croquet. Photo credit Quentin Bacon.


Crab cakes:

  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup minced green onions
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon peel
  • 4 teaspoons finely chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh tarragon
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound Alaskan king crabmeat
  • 1 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 4 tablespoons (or more) unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons (or more) canola oil
  • 3 cups mixed baby green lettuces
  • Lemon wedges
  • Tartar sauce:

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup diced peeled cored Granny Smith apple
  • ¼ cup finely chopped dill pickle
  • ¼ cup finely chopped onion
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons drained capers
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


    To prepare crab cakes:

  1. Line baking sheet with waxed paper.
  2. Whisk first 8 ingredients in large bowl.
  3. Mix in crabmeat and panko, breaking up crabmeat slightly. Let stand 15 minutes.
  4. Using 3-inch ring mold, form crab mixture into 8 patties on prepared baking sheet. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour and up to 1 day.
  5. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter with 1 tablespoon of oil in each of 2 heavy large skillets over medium-high heat.
  6. Add crab cakes to skillets and cook until golden on both sides, adding more butter and oil as needed, about 5 minutes total.
  7. To prepare tartar sauce:

  8. Whisk all ingredients in medium bowl to blend.
  9. Season with salt and pepper.
  10. Cover and refrigerate up to 2 days.
  11. To serve: Mound the lettuce on 4 plates. Set 2 crab cakes on each plate.

Recipe and photos courtesy Curtis Stone.

Curtis Stone What's For Dinner Cookbook

Curtis Stone’s philosophy is to cook as Mother Nature intended so he keeps his recipes simple, using local, seasonal, and organic ingredients and allowing the food to speak for itself. Stone is the host of Bravo’s popular culinary competition Top Chef Masters, which returns for a fifth season in 2013. His fifth cookbook, What’s for Dinner?: Delicious Recipes for a Busy Life will be published by Ballantine Books in April 2013.

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