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Mini Asian Crab Cakes


Mini crab cakes encrusted with sesame seeds get a kick from wasabi and soy sauce. The toppings of wasabi, mayonnaise, cucumber, and pickled ginger add creaminess, crispness, and tang, as well as color.

  • Yield: Makes about 2 dozen

Photography: not applicable

Source: Martha Stewart Living, December 2003


  • 8 ounces jumbo lump crabmeat, picked over
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise, plus 3 tablespoons, for garnish
  • 2 scallions, trimmed and finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons wasabi paste
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lime zest
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons plain breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds
  • 2/3 cup vegetable oil, plus more if needed
  • 1 English cucumber, for garnish
  • 1/2 cup drained pickled ginger, for garnish
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper


  1. Flake crabmeat with a fork in a medium bowl; stir in 1/4 cup mayonnaise, scallions, soy sauce, 1/2 teaspoon wasabi, and zest. Stir in 2 tablespoons breadcrumbs. Cover with plastic wrap; chill 1 hour.

  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt, and pepper; set aside. In a small bowl, beat eggs with 1 tablespoon water; set aside. In a shallow bowl, stir together sesame seeds and remaining 1/2 cup breadcrumbs.

  3. Form one scant tablespoon crab mixture into a ball; dip in seasoned flour. Flatten into a 3/4-inch high cake about 1 1/4 inches in diameter. Repeat with remaining crab mixture. Dip cakes in egg mixture, then roll in breadcrumb mixture.

  4. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Add half the crab cakes; cook, turning once, until golden and crisp on both sides, about 1 1/2 minutes. Using a slotted spatula, transfer to paper towel-lined plates to drain. Repeat with the remaining cakes, adding more oil if needed. Let cool completely.

  5. Transfer crab cakes to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Freeze (uncovered) until firm, about 1 hour. Transfer to an airtight container; freeze until ready to use, up to 6 weeks.

  6. To serve, preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place the crab cakes on an ungreased baking sheet, and bake until heated through, 10 to 14 minutes.

  7. Meanwhile, stir together remaining 3 tablespoons mayonnaise and 1 1/2 teaspoons wasabi. Using a vegetable peeler, make 24 (2-by-3/4-inch) ribbons from cucumber; fold each ribbon into thirds.

  8. Dot each crab cake with 1/2 teaspoon wasabi mayonnaise; top with a slice of cucumber and a slice of ginger.

Reviews Add a comment

  • cindylorimer
    4 JAN, 2015
    i made this as appetizers for our christmas party and it was delicious and planning on using this again for my daughter's birthday party. this is definitely a keeper. love the ginger on the crab cake and the whole balance of flavors.
  • Pork C Fish
    22 JUN, 2014
    Made for a party of 45. These freeze incredibly well (I use a vacuum sealer). A little pastry bag and tip helps knock out the wasabi mayonnaise. I suggest letting the mix blend overnight, then using some plastic wrap, create a log of crab and roll it up tightly and put back in the refrigerator or even the freezer for a bit to get firm. Slice into discs. Easier than rolling them up. Didn't do ribbons, served atop a disc of cucumber for easier service.
  • steph4545
    24 APR, 2012
    Forget the shaved cucumber. I served mine on sliced cucumber. A litter easier and just as good!!
  • trombonekaren
    13 JUN, 2009
    These are really, really good - great for a party because they are different from what you expect. My guests loved them! They go together pretty quickly and easily too! I froze them and popped them in the oven at the party and it worked great!