Crab Risotto Cakes

Ample Bites saw this dish at Harry Caray’s Italian Steakhouse and I decided to make my own version of Crab Risotto Cakes. The keys to this dish are making the risotto ahead of time and allowing it to cool in the refrigerator before broiling the cakes in the oven. The risotto cakes are rich and luxuriant and only a couple make a nice meal when accompanied with a remoulade sauce (see earlier post for my recipe) and a salad.

Shrimp, lobster, or even just vegetables like asparagus or mushrooms, can be substituted for the crab in this recipe and your choice of cheese can be used in place of the asiago cheese. The shrimp stock (see earlier post for my recipe) gives the dish a deeper flavor than a vegetable or chicken stock but either can be used to make the risotto.

Crab Risotto Cakes
(Mark Kelly, 2012)

Serves 6

1 1/2 cups arborio rice
3/4 cup finely chopped onion
2 Tbsp finely minced garlic
3 Tbsp unsalted butter
1/2 cup dry white wine
4 cups shrimp stock
1/2 cup shredded asiago cheese
1 pound jumbo lump crab meat
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper

In a medium saucepan over medium heat bring the stock to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cover the pan and continue to heat on simmer.

In a large dutch oven, melt the butter until foamy. Add the onions and garlic and sweat until soft and lightly browned. Add the rice and stir coating the rice with the butter. Continue to stir the rice for 5 minutes. Add the wine and continue stirring until most of the wine is absorbed. Using 1/2 cup of stock at a time ladle stock into the rice, stirring constantly, until the stock is absorbed. Add another 1/2 cup of stock and repeat, continuing until all of the stock is used and the rice becomes creamy, about 20 minutes.

Remove the risotto from the heat and stir in the cheese and crab until fully incorporated. Spoon the risotto into a shallow glass dish and place the dish in the refrigerator to cool for at least an hour.

Heat oven to 400F. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray. Spoon roughly 1/2 cup-sized balls of the risotto onto the baking sheet spacing them about 2-inches apart. Bake for 10 minutes, making sure not to burn the cakes and then finish them under the broiler for about 4 minutes to crisp the tops.

Serve 2-3 of the cakes on individual serving dishes over a spoonful of remoulade sauce.

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