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Dungeness crab cakes and saffron aioli

Mark Dommen

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Crab cakes
2 lb. whole Dungeness crab or 10 to 12 oz. cleaned crabmeat
3 oz. fresh scallops
1/2 tsp. sea salt
Fresh ground white pepper, to taste
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. chopped cilantro
Pinch cayenne pepper
1/4 cup grapeseed oil

1 egg yolk
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. champagne vinegar
1/2 tsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1/8 tsp. saffron
Pinch cayenne pepper
1/2 cup grapeseed oil


For crab cakes
Crack and clean whole crab, removing all shells and keeping only the meat. Place crabmeat in a mixing bowl and keep refrigerated. A 2-lb. crab should yield approximately 10 to 12 oz. cleaned crabmeat.

Place scallops in a blender with 1/2 tsp. sea salt and a pinch of white pepper. Turn on blender and slowly add cream in a steady stream. Stop blender and scrape down sides with a rubber spatula. Blend mixture one more time to make sure the scallop mousse is a nice, homogeneous mixture; set aside.

Add mustard and cilantro to the bowl with the crab; gently toss to evenly disperse ingredients. Lightly mix in scallop mousse, taking care not to break up the crab. Season mixture to taste with sea salt, white pepper and cayenne pepper.

Form cakes into a free-form shape about 1 oz. each and place on a lightly oiled baking dish. They can be made up to this stage several hours in advance and kept in the refrigerator.

Before serving, turn the broiler on high and allow it to heat up. Lightly brush the tops of crab cakes with grapeseed oil and place under the broiler for 3 to 5 minutes until they begin to lightly brown on the top and are heated through. Remove from the broiler, and with a spatula, place on a serving platter or plate each serving individually. Serve with saffron aioli and a lightly dressed mixed green and herb salad.

For aioli
Place all ingredients in a blender except grapeseed oil. Turn on the blender and slowly add oil in a steady stream until all oil is incorporated and mixture is emulsified. Adjust seasoning. Refrigerate until ready to use.

"I truly enjoy experimenting with the freshest of ingredients to create entirely new and unexpected dishes," says chef/partner Mark Dommen. "I make a point each day to ensure that the menu is a reflection of the finest produce prepared in a unique, delicious and artistic way."

Serves 6

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