Saturday, December 19, 2020

Crabmeat au Gratin

A casserole of lump crab, a highly seasoned cream sauce and two shredded cheeses.
A casserole of lump crab, a highly seasoned cream sauce and a mix of two shredded cheeses.

Crabmeat au Gratin

Crab au gratin is a delicious, decadent treat for sure, because, unless you are doing your own crabbing, boiling and picking, it can be a pricey dish for sure. If you've ever done any of the above though, you know the work that goes into picking crabs, and the effort required to get those nice, large lump pieces, so it's worth the price.

This dish can be used as an entrée, served with a nice garden salad and some hot French bread, or as an appetizer, served with some nice, sturdy crackers. As an entrée, I prefer to serve it in individual au gratin dishes {affil link}, though it can also be prepared in a casserole dish and spooned out onto plates. It's much more atheistically pleasing in the individual dishes. 

While heavy cream is often used and makes this even more decadent, I prefer using half and half, for one, because I always have it on hand for my coffee and for another, it keeps the sauce from being so heavy and overly rich that it detracts from the crab. After all, the crab is the star in this dish, although it is also delicious with shrimp!

As always, full recipe text with measurements and instructions, as well as a printable document, are a little bit further down the page. Just swipe or scroll past the step by step pictures below. Here's how to make it.

First things first, be sure that you carefully pick through the crab in search of any shell. Nothing messes with the enjoyment of a crab based dish than having the interruption of an unwelcome piece of shell. A handy tool for this is a black light, believe it or not, and they are readily available in small flashlight style handhelds {affil link} these days. You can easily see the shell and pick it out before adding it to your recipe.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter au gratin dishes, individual ramekins or a small casserole dish; set aside. Meanwhile, melt 4 tablespoons of the butter in a medium sized skillet, add green onion and sauté for 1 minute. Sprinkle in the flour a little at a time until fully incorporated. 

Add the salt, pepper, Cajun, Old Bay, parsley and dry mustard. Slowly stir in the half and half until fully incorporated; blend in wine and remove from heat. Carefully divide crabmeat evenly between the dishes, top each with the cheddar cheese then evenly divide the sauce among all of the dishes. Sprinkle top with white cheese. If using bread crumbs, melt remaining butter, mix with crumbs and sprinkle on top. Bake at 350 degrees for about 15 to 20 minutes or until heated through, hot and bubbly. Serve with a garden salad and hot French bread.

Dig in deliciousness! 

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Posted by on December 19, 2020

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