These. Are. Amazing. What are crab hush puppies you ask? Succulent little bite-sized hush puppies stuffed full of sweet Dungeness crab plus fresh herbs, minced bell pepper, and beer-scented, cornmeal-spiked batter. Assuming that you purchase the crabmeat already pulled from the shell, they are also a snap to put together. But you might want to reserve these for your inner circle: they really are that good. (When I was testing them, they went in an instant.)
If you are uninitiated with hush puppies--fried rounds of cornmeal batter that are most often served alongside seafood--you are in for a real Southern treat. I grew up on these nuggets, and living on the west coast, where they are virtually unheard of, I truly miss seeing them on menus. Granted, there are numerous heavy, stodgy, overfried and underseasoned versions out there. But when you get a good one...Oh! They are soooooooo good. This version takes that sometimes homely hush puppy to a new level.
Served with an easy-to-make tangy remoulade sauce, in true Southern style, these will be a hit at your next gathering, whether it’s New Year’s Eve or anytime during crab season.
Don’t let the fact that these are deep-fried put you off. It’s honestly not that hard, and you can fry them up just before guests arrive, then keep them warm in your oven (on a heatproof platter at 200F). Pull them out within an hour though, and watch them disappear.
Recipe: Crab Hush Puppies with Remoulade
Makes about 2 dozen bites
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 2 tbsp Creole or country mustard
- 1 tbsp bread-and-butter pickle juice
- 2 tsp sweet paprika
- 1 tsp hot sauce such as Crystal brand
- 1/2 clove garlic, minced
For the remoulade:
For the crab hush puppies:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup fine grind cornmeal
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 2 green onions, minced
- 2 tbsp very finely chopped red bell pepper
- 2 tsp finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
- 2 tsp finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 3/4 cup pilsner-style beer
- 1/2 lb fresh lump crabmeat, picked
- Vegetable oil
- To make the remoulade: Whisk together all of the ingredients in a bowl. Cover and refrigerate for 1-2 hours to let the flavors meld.