Spicy crab cakes

Spicy crab cakes

Reza’s Indian Spice

A great alternative to western-style fish cakes, which can sometimes be bland, these have a far greater depth of flavour. Crab meat is enhanced beautifully by both mustard and fennel seeds, in fact the intensity of crab is actually softened by the spices here.


Quantity Ingredient

For the crab cakes

Quantity Ingredient
150g potatoes
3-4 tablespoons vegetable oil, plus more to deep-fry
2 teaspoons black mustard seeds
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
8 curry leaves, shredded
1 onion, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
2 teaspoons grated root ginger
2 teaspoons crushed garlic
2 finely chopped green chillies
1 teaspoon chilli powder
600g white crab meat
1 lime, juiced and finely grated zest
2 tablespoons chopped chives
or 2 spring onions, chopped
1 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves
freshly ground black pepper

To coat

Quantity Ingredient
100g plain flour
2 eggs, lightly beaten
250g toasted dried breadcrumbs


  1. Boil the potatoes in their skins until tender to the point of a knife. Drain them and, when cool enough to handle, slip off their skins and grate them coarsely.
  2. Heat the oil in a wide pan over a medium heat until hot, then add the mustard and fennel seeds. Once they begin to crackle, add the curry leaves, onion and turmeric. Cook until the onion becomes soft and translucent. Now add the ginger, garlic and chillies. Sauté for a minute or so, then add the chilli powder. Stir-fry for a few more seconds, then add the crab. Stir-fry until all the moisture has been absorbed. Fold in the potato and remove from the heat. Add the lime juice and zest and the herbs, season to taste, then allow to cool.
  3. Put the flour, eggs and breadcrumbs into three separate bowls. Shape the crab meat into eight patties. Lightly dust each in flour, then dip into the egg, and finally coat with the breadcrumbs.
  4. Heat the oil for deep-frying in a deep pan or wok until it reaches 175°C. Add the patties in batches, being careful not to crowd the pan, and deep-fry for about two minutes, turning once, until golden brown all over. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Serve while still piping hot.
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