Nigel Slater’s crabcakes with pea purée

Chosen by Nicola Jeal who serves these with a dollop of fresh pea purée.

Serves 2-3

300g crabmeat
a large stick of lemon grass or 2 smaller ones
a thumb-sized piece of ginger
2 spring onions
a small hot chilli
zest and juice of a lime
a small handful of coriander leaves, chopped
8 tbs soft white breadcrumbs
black pepper
butter and oil for cooking

for the minted pea purée
400g shelled peas
4 sprigs of mint
3 tbs olive oil

Put the crabmeat into a mixing bowl. Discard the outer leaves of the lemon grass, then chop the inner leaves very finely and add the crab. Peel and finely grate the ginger, finely chop the spring onions and the chilli, and gently stir into the crabmeat with the lime juice and zest, making sure not to crush the crabmeat into a paste.

Fold in the coriander and the breadcrumbs together with a little black pepper. Take up scoops of the mixture and pat in small, thickish cakes about the diameter of a digestive biscuit. The mixture should make about 6 thick patties.

To make the pea purée, boil the peas and mint sprigs in lightly salted water till tender, drain and whizz the peas and mint in a food processor with the oil until smooth.

Warm a little butter and oil in a shallow pan. Lower in the crabcakes and cook until golden on each side. Serve with the pea purée.

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