If you’re preparing a buffet lunch for a group of friends, you’ll need plenty of tasty sides to accompany the main dishes—and the quicker they can be prepared, the better. This makes a simple and healthy alternative to pâté, and the crunchy kick provided by the chillis, peppers and onions is a nice contrast to the fresh crab meat.

Spicy Crab with Chilli Mayonnaise Recipe

Ingredients

Serves: 4

Cook in under 30 minutes.

  • 1 green chilli
  • 1 small green pepper
  • 1 small red onion
  • 3 spring onions
  • 4 dressed crabs in their shells, to yield 550g crab meat
  • 85g ricotta cheese
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 300ml French mayonnaise
  • 1tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 4 slices white bread

Method

1. Preheat the grill to make the toast 

2. Rinse, dry, deseed and finely slice the green chilli and the pepper. Halve, peel and thinly slice the red onion. Rinse, dry, trim and slice the spring onions, including some of the green parts, and put them all into a mixing bowl.

3. Take the crab meat from the shells and add it to the mixing bowl with the ricotta cheese, stirring until well combined. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

4. Stir the chilli flakes into the mayonnaise and season with salt and pepper if necessary. Place in a serving bowl and set aside.

5. Toast the bread, cut into quarters in triangles and arrange them on a serving platter. Pile the crab mixture in the centre and place the bowl of chilli mayonnaise on one side.

6. Let each person help themselves to the crab mixture, spreading it on the toast and topping with the chilli-flavoured mayonnaise.

 

Why Not....

Give the toast a twist

Remember, bread goes twice as far when turned into melba toast. It’s also a cunning way of cutting calories. Once you’ve toasted the bread as the recipe instructs, use a serrated knife to cut carefully through it horizontally. Then cut each square in half diagonally and toast again under the grill. You end up with half the thickness, but it’s still a great vehicle for the crab mayonnaise.

As for the best way to prepare a crab (which can be a fiddly business), go to fishonfriday.org.uk

Looking for a wine to accompany this dish? Rachel Smith has the perfect bottle.

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