The lightly dressed crab shines in this pretty appetizer, which is finished with a tangle of mixed greens and small local or cherry tomatoes.
You'll have leftover vinaigrette, which can be used to dress any fresh greens.
- For the crab salad
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
- 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon powdered mustard, preferably Colman's
- 8 ounces jumbo lump crabmeat, picked over to remove shells and cartilage
- 1 1/2 tablespoons diced yellow bell pepper
- 1 1/2 tablespoons thinly sliced scallions, white and light-green parts
- For the vinaigrette
- 1 tablespoon Dijon-style mustard
- 4 tablespoons coarse-grain mustard
- 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 cup light olive oil
- For assembly
- 1 mini baguette (about 8 inches)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 cups mesclun or spring mix
- 3 large small local tomatoes or cherry tomatoes, cut in half
For the crab salad: Combine the mayonnaise, Old Bay, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, powdered mustard, crabmeat, bell pepper and scallions in a medium bowl; fold together carefully, trying not to break up the lumps of crab. Cover and refrigerate to chill slightly.
For the vinaigrette: Combine the mustards, vinegar and syrup in a medium bowl. Slowly add the light olive oil, whisking continuously until the dressing has emulsified. The yield is about 3/4 cup.
To assemble, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Cut 12 slices from the baguette that are a scant 1/2-inch thick. Brush or drizzle them with the oil, then season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a baking sheet and bake 10 for minutes, until crisp. They may be slightly browned on the edges. Allow them to cool.
Toss the mesclun with about 1 tablespoon of the vinaigrette in a small bowl. Pile 1/2 cup of the dressed greens on each plate.
Spoon the crab salad onto the crostini; arrange 3 crostini on each plate, surrounding the salad. Add 3 tomato halves to each serving and season lightly with salt and pepper. Drizzle with a little of the vinaigrette, and serve.
Adapted from a recipe by Mark Salter, chef-owner of the Robert Morris Inn in Oxford, Md.
Tested by Jane Touzalin.
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