Looking to impress a date, boss, in-laws, client or get yourself out of the doghouse? Although pricey, this recipe is easy to make and leaves a great impression. The key to this meal is to use quality crabmeat and try to keep as many lumps intact as possible. Prep time is less than 30 minutes and can be done while you entertain your guests, then have some conversation over a bottle of wine while the casserole bakes. Of course you may wish bake ahead and keep the simpleness a secret. Another version of this dish is to omit the panko, and serve cold over a bed of lettuce, either as an appetizer or entrée.
1 lb jumbo lump crabmeat
1 lb crab claw meat
1 stick butter
1/2 minced shallots (substitute 1/4 cup minced onion and 1/4 cup minced garlic)
1/4 cup green onions
1/4 cup parsley
1 cup Hellmann’s Dijonnaise
1 tbsp creole seasoning
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 cup panko bread crumbs
Chill a large mixing bowl. (I like to do every thing I can to keep the crabmeat cold, not only for food safety, but to keep the lump crabmeat intact.) Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter an 8 – 10 inch square or 2 qt casserole dish with two tablespoons of butter.
Dump the crabmeat in the chilled bowl. (Remove any shell fragments you find during the course of preparation.) Place back in the refrigerator.
Melt 2 tbsp of butter in a skillet and sauté the shallots until clear. Remove from heat and stir in the parsley and green onions.
In a separate mixing bowl whisk the Dijonnaise, seasoning, Worcestershire sauce and lemon juice together.
Remove the bowl of crabmeat from the refrigerator and add the sautéed vegetables, half of the panko, Dijonnaise mixture over the crabmeat and gently fold together until well mixed.
Melt the remaining butter and mix into the panko.
Pour the crabmeat into the casserole dish and top with the panko.
Place the casserole into the oven and bake until the panko is golden brown and the mixture is bubbly – about 30 minutes.