• Prep Time
    2 hours
  • Cook Time
    10 minutes
  • Serving
  • View


This recipe was inspired by Cindy Hutson’s curried crab cakes which I enjoyed at The Cliff Hotel in Negril, Jamaica a few years ago.  Cindy’s cookbook From the Tip of My Tongue (2015) was available for sale there and I have definitely benefitted from its guidance.  The blurb about Cindy (below) is from the Fine Cooking web site.  In addition to being a talented chef, Cindy seems like a nice person.  Her sunny personality comes through in her writing and her cooking. If you cook with love, it shows!  This dish has several components and each one should be in your repertoire.  And don’t forget the arugula on the bottom.  When you get a single bite of the peppery crunchy greens, along with the sweet curried crabmeat, the lime scented butter sauce and the lush mango salsa, you’ll see that the sum is so much more than the parts!

Cindy Hutson may have been born and raised in New Jersey, but in Florida this self-taught chef has mastered what she calls “cuisines of the sun,” the southern, Mediterranean, and Caribbean flavors that color her cooking. Her Coral Gables restaurant, Ortanique on the Mile, which she opened in 1999 with business and life partner Delius Shirley, has landed her on a raft of “best of” lists, including Best New Ethic Restaurant (Bon Appétit, 2001), Miami’s Best Chef (The New York Times Magazine, 2009), Top Female Chef (American Chef Association, 2006), as well as garnering several Awards of Excellence from Wine Spectator.

“I love the islands,” says Hutson, who put that love into action with an outpost, Ortanique on the Crescent, on Grand Cayman Island, and at The Dunmore resort on Harbor Island, Bahamas. On any given night, the menu may feature a special seviche with mango and Scotch Bonnet peppers, conch fritters, a West Indian-style bouillabaisse, or jerked pork chops. Before lunch and dinner service, Hutson may be giving a cooking class to teach her fans how to whip up an island feast at home. She even wrote a cookbook, From the Tip of My Tongue, filled with recipes specifically aimed at home cooks.



Mango Salsa

Lime Beurre Blanc

Fried Shallots


    My advice is to make the crab cakes first and put them in the frig. Then, make the salsa and let the flavors marry in the frig for a while. Then make the Beurre Blanc and hold it on the stove top in a glass measuring cup half submerged in a pan of warm water (don't overheat or it will curdle). The sauce can keep an hour or so, maybe longer. Fry the shallots while the cakes are frying. This is an evening's endeavor while you watch a good movie and set a beautiful table and sip champagne. Choose a white wine or champagne with a creamy mouthfeel as this dish has a lot of acid and depending on the amount of jalapeno you put in the salsa a fair measure of heat! And don't forget the arugula because it adds the perfect peppery counterpoint to the sweetness of the curry and mango.

    Step 1

    Make the crab cakes: In a large bowl combine the chopped red onion, red and yellow bell pepper and chopped scallions.

    Step 2

    Add the mayonnaise, the curry powder, mustard and Worcestershire sauce. Then add the panko breadcrumbs. Combine gently with your hands.

    Step 3

    The last thing to add is the lightly beaten egg. Add more or less egg to get the texture you want.

    Step 4

    Combine and shape into patties that are 1/3 cup each. Pat each cake in a little more of the panko breadcrumbs to get a crunchy exterior.

    Step 5

    Refrigerate for a while, maybe an hour or more.

    Step 6

    Make the mango salsa. Peel and seed and chop the mango. Combine with the rest of the chopped ingredients. Be careful with the sugar. Add enough to counter the tartness of the mango but not too much! Put in frig to allow the flavors to marry.

    Step 7

    Make the Lime Beurre Blanc: In a small saucepan over medium heat, reduce the lime juice and wine and vinegar and shallots to a syrup.

    Step 8

    Add in the butter, one or two pats at a time. Whisk constantly. At the end, add a little cream and keep whisking. Hold in a Pyrex cup set down in a saucepan of warm water. Keep an eye on this and don't let it overheat.

    Step 9

    Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Heat some canola oil and a pat of butter over medium high heat in a skillet. Fry the cakes on both sides until golden brown. Put in the oven to finish cooking all the way through.

    Step 10

    Now, sauté the shallots. Cut them in thin rings and coat them with a little flour. Sauté them until golden brown and place on a paper towel.

    Step 11

    Assemble the dish! Arugula on the bottom, then the crab cake. Then, the salsa and on the top, the fried shallots.

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