Cilantro Crab and Shrimp Cakes

Cilantro Crab and Shrimp Cakes

Cilantro Crab and Shrimp Cakes

It seems to me that when it comes to cilantro, there are 2 camps – those who love it and those who despise it!  You only have to do a quick tour through my blog to know which camp I reside in.  I did not grow up with this peppery herb, but once I started travelling, I fell for it, big time and was astonished to learn just how many cuisines embrace it. What the nay-sayers describe as strong and soapy, I find to be fresh and exotic.  I love the way the flavour changes when you cook the fresh herb in a dish such as this one.  I never leave the vegetable market without a fresh bunch of cilantro and find myself adding it to  much of what I cook; from soups and salads  to stews and casseroles!  Thankfully most of my friends and family love cilantro as well.

I was going to make this recipe for our party on New Years Eve, but ran out of time. Instead, I made it for dinner last week and served it with a simple salad. I find crab to be very rich, so you only really need a couple of cakes to make a nice dinner.  Just one word about the salt levels:  the original recipe called for much more salt.  Because fish sauce is so salty, I would just use minimal salt during the preparation and if you use canned crab like I did, I would not add any extra salt.  This recipe would make a lovely appetizer for a party or a nice light meal with a salad.  The recipe comes from the latest issue of “Taste” magazine, by BC Liquor Stores and I have tweaked it.


2 tablespoons shallots, finely chopped

1 cup fresh or canned crab meat (see note re: salt)

1 pound fresh raw shrimp, finely chopped

½ cup fine dried breadcrumbs

2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped

2 green onions, finely chopped

1 egg, lightly beaten

2 teaspoons red or green Thai curry paste

2 tablespoons fish sauce

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon sugar

¼ teaspoon sea salt (If you are using canned crab, do not add any additional salt)

½ teaspoon white pepper


Salt and pepper

Thai Sweet Chili Sauce

Mango, finely sliced

For Frying:

Canola oil


Mix together shallots, crabmeat, chopped shrimp, breadcrumbs, cilantro, and green onions.  Put aside.

In a separate bowl, mix together egg, curry paste, fish sauce, baking powder, sugar, salt and pepper.

Stir second mixture gently into the first mixture until well combined.

With wet hand, shape 2 tablespoons of the mixture into flattened rounds (about 1 ½ inches wide and ½ inch thick.  Place onto a parchment lined baking sheet.  These can be covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated up to 4 hours.

Heat oil in a skillet.  When hot, cook the cakes a few at a time until golden brown, about 3 to 4 minutes.  Drain on paper towels.

You can alternatively place the cakes into a preheated 350° oven and bake until golden, about 15 to 20 minutes. I did both methods and preferred the fried ones.  Enjoy!

Serve with Thai sweet chili sauce, garnished with mango and more chopped cilantro.

Cilantro Crab and Shrimp Cakes

Cilantro Crab and Shrimp Cakes

12 Responses to “Cilantro Crab and Shrimp Cakes”

    • chefjulianna

      Hey, awesome! I am so glad to meet a kindred cilantro-lover! Stay tuned…I have lots more recipes with cilantro, in store…Thanks so much for taking the time to visit and comment! Cheers.

  1. superfoodista

    Hi Julianna, wow these look and sound fantastic!! The combination of shrimp and cilantro sounds perfect – I love anything that has cilantro in it! 😉 So glad you stopped by my blog so I could discover yours! Love the recipes, the concept and the photos! Beautiful! We’ll be in touch 😉 hugs, Sylvia

    • chefjulianna

      Well, thank-you! I really admire your blog and am delighted that I found it. Happy to hear that you are enjoying mine too, as I really only started a few months ago and sometimes wonder where I’m going.. Glad to find some fellow cilantro-loving bloggers! Hope you get to try the recipe! Cheers!

  2. Liz

    I love mango and cilantro. The Presentation looks awesome and I bet it tastes delicious too. Happy 2014 . Best wishes!

    • chefjulianna

      Hey Liz, I’m with you on that one! Mango and cilantro were made for each other! And it really is a yummy recipe! Happy 2014 to you too. Have a lovely weekend!

  3. gypsymoonsilverspoon

    Yep, it’s a genetic thing. Those who love it love it, and those who hate it think it tastes like soap. Lucky us to fall in the first category. I feel like the cilantro-mango combo in this would be awesome. Thanks for sharing, loving the photos too!

    • chefjulianna

      Ah yes, it must be genetic, because there doesn’t seem to be a middle ground! And I’m with you – I’m sooo happy to be in the first category! Sure glad you’re enjoying the pics. Have an awesome weekend!

    • chefjulianna

      Wow, so happy I can provide you with some recipes!! Thanks so much for stopping by and taking the time to comment! Happy Holidays to you! 😀


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