July 9, 2009

Crab Casserole

Crab and Rice makes everything so nice.

Since I am sharing crab recipes today, I thought of this one, a delightful dish to prepare if you really want to impress your guests or if you just want something really good. This recipe is an update from an old Creole recipe way of making it which, still left in this version, uses moistened bread as a thickener instead of a flour roux.

Crab and Rice Casserole 
serves about 6 

2 1/2 sticks of butter or margarine, divided
1/2 cup chopped onions
1 bell pepper, julienne
5 small garlic pods, minced
1 teaspoon salt-free Creole seasoning
1 can mushroom soup
1/4 cup sliced pimentos
3 parsley sprigs, minced
2 ribs of celery, thinly sliced
4 sliced of white bread, crusts removed
1/2 cup water or chicken stock
2 cups crabmeat
2 cups cooked white rice
Salt and pepper
Panko or plain bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 475 degrees F. In a large skillet over medium heat, add 2 sticks of butter. Sauté the onions, bell pepper, celery and garlic until onions wilt. Stir in the soup, pimentos, parsley and fold in the crabmeat. Allow to simmer for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, soak the bread in the water and break apart using a folk. Add bread and water to the pan and fold in the rice, salt and pepper to taste mixing well. Spoon into a buttered 2 quart casserole dish, sprinkle with the Panko and dot with remaining butter. Bake covered in oven for half an hour.

Remove cover and bake for 5 minutes to brown top.

Note: If you cannot find or do not have salt-free Creole seasoning, be sure to taste and adjust salt when folding in the rice.

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