Wild Alaska King Crab Blinis

Jun Tanaka's crab with tarragon and lime cream makes for a delicate starter.
  • For the blinis
  • 140g plain flour
  • 1/4 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tbsp yeast
  • 175ml warmed milk
  • 1 egg, separated
  • 125g butter, plus and extra tbsp
  • Salt and pepper
  • For the crab
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 2 wild Alaska king crab legs
  • 1 tbsp dill, chopped
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • For the creme fraiche
  • 6 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 6 tbsp creme fraiche
  • 2 tbsp tarragon, chopped
  • 2 limes, zested and juiced
  • Salt, to taste
  • For the dressing
  • 60ml extra olive oil
  • 2 1/2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp white sugar
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • For the salad
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 200g rocket salad

For the blinis:

Sift the plain flour and baking powder together. Mix the dried yeast with the warm milk, then separate the eggs and mix the yolk in with the yeast milk. Stir this into the dry ingredients to make a smooth batter, then stir in a tablespoon of the butter.

Whisk the egg white to stiff peaks, then gently fold into the batter, keeping as much volume as possible. Place a frying pan on to a high heat, pour a tablespoon of clarified butter into the pan and fry a small spoon just so you can taste for correct seasoning.

When ready to cook, carry on placing a small tablespoon of batter into the pan. When the blinis start to colour around the bottom, flip over and turn down the heat.

For the crab:

To cook the wild Alaska king crab legs, place a large pan half full of water on to the stove with a tablespoon of salt in the water. When the water is boiling drop the crab legs in and cook for six minutes, then take out and allow to cool down.

When cold crack open the legs and take the white meat out. Pick it down to small pieces, add the chopped dill, lemon juice and season to taste, and leave in the fridge until needed.

For the creme fraiche:

Place the mayonnaise, crème fraiche, chopped tarragon and lime zest/juice into a bowl, mix well and add salt to taste.

For the Salad:

Mix the extra olive oil, white wine vinegar, white sugar, Dijon mustard, chopped garlic and salt/pepper into a bowl to make the dressing for the salad. Peel and cut the avocado into small thin pieces, mix with the rocket and add 3/4 tbsp of the dressing. Combine well.

To serve, place two of the blini off centre on the plate, spoon two generous piles of the crab on top, next to that place a spoon of creme fraiche and a small handful of the salad.

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