These massive sandwiches combine crispy crab cakes and a tangy, honey-sweetened mayonnaise on a crunchy baguette. It's the kind of crave-inducing food that owners Joshua Henderson and Danny Sizemore create on the fly in their vintage trailer in Seattle called Skillet.
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1 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
1 large garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 teaspoon minced thyme
1 1/2 teaspoons honey
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
3 tablespoons minced piquillo peppers (about 3)
1 tablespoon minced cornichons (about 4)
1 small shallot, minced
1 large egg
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Freshly ground pepper
1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat, picked over
2 1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
Vegetable oil, for frying
Four 8-inch hoagie rolls or baguettes, split
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
2 cups shredded iceberg lettuce
10 cherry tomatoes, thinly sliced
How to Make It
In a small bowl, mix the mayonnaise with the lemon juice, lemon zest, garlic, parsley, thyme and honey and season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
In a medium bowl, stir the mayonnaise with the piquillo peppers, cornichons, shallot, egg, parsley, mustard, salt and lemon zest. Season with pepper and fold in the crab and 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of the panko. Form the mixture into 2-inch cakes about 1/4 inch thick; you should have about 12 crab cakes.
Spread the remaining 2 cups of panko on a large plate. Coat the crab cakes with the panko, pressing to help the panko adhere.
In a large nonstick skillet, heat 1/4 inch of vegetable oil until shimmering. Fry the crab cakes in 2 batches, turning once, until golden on both sides, about 6 minutes total. Drain on paper towels.
Meanwhile, preheat the broiler. Spread the hoagie rolls with the butter and toast under the broiler until the edges are golden and crisp, about 1 minute. Spread the rolls with a generous amount of the lemon aioli. Lay 3 crab cakes on the bottom half of each roll and top with shredded lettuce and sliced tomatoes. Close the sandwiches and serve immediately.
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