This recipe, courtesy of our friends from Cod and Capers, was created with the idea of a simple but delicious cocktail party. I must admit, I was a little dubious about it at first. Puff pastry tends to have that effect on me. Still, I realized quickly that it comes to quickly and easily and that puff pastry is not to be feared (especially with the addition of puff pastry tarts), ready to go and bought in the freezer section! Ha!
As with all recipes, seek out top quality ingredients. There’s a reason that I trek up to Cod and Capers for their seafood (#notanad), I just think they’re the best seafood available. Plus, I like supporting small, family-owned business.
Enjoy my friends. Enjoy all of it.
- Puff Pastry cups or Phyllo cups
- 8 Ounces Crabmeat (I used Lump Crabmeat – also called Backfin)
- 2 Tablespoons Red Bell Pepper (diced)
- 1 Shallot (diced)
- 2 Tablespoons Hot Sauce
- 3/4 Cup Cubed Bread (I used Brioche)
- 1/2 Cup Heavy Cream
- 1 Tablespoon Old Bay (any seafood seasoning will do)
- Juice from 1 Lemon
- Chopped Parsley
- Black Pepper
Jessica, the owner of Cod and Capers recommends pasteurized Crabmeat for Crab Imperial recipe; it’s fresh (never frozen) but you could also use truly fresh crabmeat (not pasteurized) if you can find it. The pasteurized variety comes in a tin whereas the truly fresh crabmeat usually comes packaged in a little plastic tub. Drain the crabmeat and check for shells or cartilage.
Place the cubed bread in a small bowl (I just tore it into small pieces) and pour the heavy cream over it. Allow it to sit while you prepare the rest of the recipe. Jessica recommends the brioche they carry in the store, but you can use any bread you have on hand. Combine all other ingredients in a large mixing bowl, being careful not to break up the Crabmeat too much. The soaked bread should be the last thing you add to the bowl, folding it in gently but thoroughly.
At this point, after finishing with Crab Imperial recipe, you can refrigerate the crab mixture for use later or the next day or you can spoon it directly into the cups and bake it immediately. Bake the filled cups in a preheated 300-degree oven for about 10-12 minutes. Keep an eye on the puff pastry cups (if you’re using them) because they are already cooked and can brown too pretty quickly. Everything here is already cooked – you’re just heating it through and getting the slightest bit of color on the crabmeat mixture.