Lava Crab

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 40 min
  • Cook: 40 min
  • Yield: 6 servings
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11/2 cups Alaskan crab (picked)

1 pound jumbo lump crab (drained from liquid)

31/2 large egg yolks

1/4 cup mayonnaise

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1/2 tablespoon Tabasco® sauce

1/3 cup chives (chopped)

1/2 cup plum (Roma) tomatoes (seeds removed and brunoise cut)

1 teaspoon fresh tarragon (finely chopped)

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (ground)

11/2 cups panko bread crumbs

1 pound kataifi phyllo dough


1 cup raw shrimp with shell (rough chopped)

1/2 cup yellow onion (chopped)

1/4 cup garlic cloves (chopped)

1/2 pound butter

11/2 cups plum (Roma) tomatoes (diced)

1/2 cup tomato paste

1/2 cup white wine

1/2 cup lobster base

21/2 tablespoons Old Bay® seasoning

1/4 cup fresh tarragon leaves (whole)

1/4 cup fresh thyme leaves (whole)

5 cups heavy whipping cream


6 lava crabs (fried)

6 teaspoons chives (chopped)


  1. To make the crab mixture, set the crab aside in a strainer to drain liquid. In a mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks, mayonnaise, mustard,Tabasco®, chives, tomatoes, tarragon, salt and nutmeg together. Add the crab to the ingredients in the mixing bowl, and fold with hands. Add the panko bread crumbs and mix well. Scoop 2-ounce balls of mixture onto a sheet pan and set aside. Wrap the crab balls in kataifi phyllo dough until enclosed and completely covered. Place on a sheet pan; cover and set inside the refrigerator.
  2. To make the sauce, in a saucepan saute the shrimp, onion and garlic in the butter until lightly browned. Add the tomatoes and tomato paste, cook for 8 minutes. Deglaze with the white wine, and reduce until the wine is evaporated. Add the lobster base, Old Bay® seasoning, tarragon, thyme, heavy cream, and let it simmer for 30 minutes. Remove from heat and puree the mixture in a blender. Strain through a chinois, and reserve until ready to use.
  3. To serve, place each kataifi-wrapped crab on a spoon and slowly immerse into a preheated fryer set at high heat until golden brown. Remove and drain on paper towel. Pour 2 ounces of the hot sauce in each martini glass. Place the fried lava crab in sauce and garnish with chopped chives.