Tom Douglas's Crab Cake BLT Sandwich Recipe

Crab Cake BLT.
  • Total: 25 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 10 mins
  • Yield: 6 servings

This delightful recipe comes from Seattle celebrity chef Tom Douglas. Chef Douglas' restaurants include Lola, dahlia lounge, Etta's, and The Palace Kitchen. Recipe reprinted with permission from The Marshall Field's Cookbook (Book Kitchen 2006).

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What You'll Need

  • For the Crab Cakes:
  • 5 to 6 slices bread (white sandwich)
  • 3/4 cup fresh parsley (chopped)
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Tabasco sauce
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme (chopped fresh or dried)
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper (freshly ground)
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup onion (chopped)
  • 1/4 cup bell pepper (green, chopped)
  • 1/4 cup bell pepper (red, chopped)
  • 1 pound crabmeat (Dungeness, picked over and drained)
  • For the Horseradish Mayonnaise:
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest (grated)
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper (freshly ground)
  • Salt to taste (kosher)
  • For the Sandwich Preparation:
  • 18 slices thick-cut bacon (a little more than 1 pound)
  • 4 tablespoons butter (unsalted)
  • 12 slices bread (firm white sandwich bread, such as Pepperidge Farm)
  • 6 slices tomato
  • 6 butter lettuce leaves

How to Make It

To prepare the crab cakes, tear up the bread and pulse in a food processor to make fine, soft crumbs (you should have about 5 cups). Transfer the bread crumbs to a shallow pan and mix in 1/2 cup of the parsley.

In a food processor, combine the egg yolk, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, mustard, paprika, thyme, celery seeds and black pepper. Pulse to combine. With the motor running, add the oil through the feed tube in a slow, steady stream until the mixture emulsifies and forms a mayonnaise.

Transfer the mayonnaise to a bowl.

In a large bowl, combine the onion and bell peppers with the remaining 1/4 cup parsley. Add the mayonnaise and crab meat and mix lightly. Using a rubber spatula, fold in 1 cup of the bread crumb mixture. Do not overwork the mixture or the crab cakes may get gummy. Gently form 6 cakes and flatten them into patties about 1/2 inch thick. Dredge the patties lightly in the remaining bread crumb mixture. If you have time, cover the crab cakes with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or longer.

To prepare the mayonnaise, combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and mix well. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt as necessary. Cover and refrigerate.

Preheat oven to 400°F. Put the bacon on a baking sheet, place it in the oven, and cook until crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove the bacon from the pan and drain on paper towels. Place 2 large, nonstick skillets over medium heat and add about 2 tablespoons of the butter to each pan. Add 3 crab cakes to each pan and slowly fry them for 4 to 5 minutes on each side, until they are golden brown and heated through.

Preheat the broiler. Place the bread on a baking sheet and toast under the broiler, turning until light golden brown on both sides. Lightly spread each slice of bread with the horseradish mayo. Put the cooked bacon on a baking sheet and warm it briefly under the broiler.

Place 1 side of toast, mayo side up, on each plate. Top each with 1 crab cake, 3 pieces of bacon, a tomato slice, and lettuce leaves.

Place the second slice of toast on top, mayo side down.

More Crab Cakes: