Hot Crab Fondue Outre
Every cook has recipes on file that they consider “secret weapons,” recipes that transcend trends and never go out of style. Hot crab fondue is hardly a new wave recipe, but the mention that it will be on my menu guarantees that the people on the guest list will RSVP with their acceptances faster than usual. (I have to admit that it’s so wonderfully rich it may work better as a party dip with bread cubes and crudités than as a main course fondue.) It uses Old Bay seasoning, a multi-spice blend from the Chesapeake Bay region that is especially complementary to seafood.
Makes4 to 6 servings
Total Timeunder 30 minutes
Make Ahead RecipeYes
One Pot MealYes
OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Cocktail Party, game day
Recipe Courseappetizer, main course
Dietary Considerationappetizer, main course
Five Ingredients or LessYes
Taste and Texturecheesy, creamy, hot & spicy, rich, savory, tangy, winey
Type of Dishdip/spread
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons minced shallots or white parts of scallions
- 3 tablespoons dry vermouth or white wine
- 1 cup half and half or light cream
- 8 ounces cream cheese, cut into small cubes, at room temperature
- 4 ounces Cheddar cheese, shredded (about 1¼ cups)
- ½ pound crabmeat, flaked and picked over for cartilage
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- ½ teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
- Hot pepper sauce, to taste
- Chopped fresh parsley or chives, for garnish
In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add the vermouth and bring to a boil. Add the half-and-half and bring to a simmer.
Gradually whisk in the cream cheese, whisking until the first addition is smooth and melted before adding another. Stir in the Cheddar cheese until melted. Stir in the crab, lemon juice, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and Old Bay seasoning. Season with the hot sauce.
Transfer to an earthenware or enameled cast-iron fondue pot and keep warm over a fondue burner. Sprinkle with the parsley. Serve immediately, with the dipping ingredients of your choice.
1998 Rick Rodgers