Baked halibut topped with deviled crab and a lemon butter sauce on a plate with rice and green beans

Halibut with Deviled Crab Topping

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The sweet, mild flavor of halibut is paired with a slightly spicy deviled crab topping and then drizzled with a creamy lemon butter sauce. It’s perfect for a special dinner, and quick enough to make on a weeknight.

Cliff Notes:
Preheat the oven to 375°.
For the deviled crab: Sauté diced onion and jalapeno in butter until soft. Add in panko bread crumbs and cream. Cook until thickened. Add seasonings, egg, and half of grated parmesan.
Assembly: Season halibut filet with salt, pepper, and lemon, then spoon deviled crab mixture onto fish. Sprinkle remaining parmesan cheese over the top, and drizzle with melted butter. Bake about 20 minutes until fish is cooked through. Broil for the last couple of minutes to crisp the topping.
Lemon Butter Sauce: Reduce white wine to about 1/3 of original volume. Add lemon juice and cream. Whisk in cold butter, a tablespoon at a time to form a creamy sauce. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Drizzle over the fish and deviled crab topping.

Make It Your Way:
– Use any firm white fish, such as cod or flounder.
– Stuff the deviled crab into butterflied prawns or mushroom caps.
– Form the devilled crab into patties, coat in panko bread crumbs, and cook in butter until crispy and cooked through.

Halibut is one of my favorite fishes. It’s firm texture is slightly sweet, very mild (not much of a fishy-flavor), and pairs wonderfully with bold flavors, such as the spicy and lemony flavors in this meal. But despite my love of halibut, in this meal, it ends up taking a back seat to the delicious crab topping. And don’t overlook the lemon butter sauce – the bright lemony flavor really enhances the rest of the dish.

If you’re like me, you’ve probably been disappointed over the years when you’ve had a meal that included crab as an ingredient, and afterwards you wonder where the crab was! It’s easy for crab to disappear if you don’t treat it right. It must be treated gently so it doesn’t break up too much and to make sure that some of the bigger pieces remain. This is why I prefer to either get a whole crab and shell it myself, or spend a bit of money to purchase good quality crab from the seafood counter. If the only option you have is canned crab (like what is sold next to the canned tuna fish), consider supplementing with some cooked baby shrimp to add a bit of texture and flavor.

This deviled crab mixture is incredibly versatile. To use if for stuffed shrimp, shell and butterfly open 8-12 large prawns. Spoon the crab mixture on the top of each prawn, and bake at 400° for 8-10 minutes, until the prawns are pink and the topping is cooked through.

For crab cakes, form the mixture into 4-8 cakes (depending on the size you prefer). Set them on a plate in the fridge for about 20 minutes to firm up, then coat them in Panko Bread Crumbs, and pan-fry in melted butter or olive oil over medium-high heat until golden brown and cooked through. Serve simply with lemon and tartar sauce, or dress them up using the lemon butter sauce recipe below.

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