Dungeness Crab Club Sandwich

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I have never met any kind of club sandwich I didn’t like, and this version is a dream. Aside from the fabulous crab, crisp fresh fennel and applewood-smoked bacon make this particularly delicious.

Ingredients

  • 3 egg yolks (¼ cup)
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Chinese chili-garlic paste
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • salt
  • ¾ cup pure olive oil
  • 10 ounces fresh Dungeness crab meat
  • 1 fennel bulb, peeled of outer layer, cut in -inch dice
  • 2 celery ribs, peeled, cut in -inch dice
  • 1 small red onion, cut in -inch dice
  • 8 slices applewood-smoked bacon
  • 12 slices brioche sandwich loaf, sliced ¼ inch thick
  • 4 leaves butter lettuce, washed, spin-dried
  • 2 small ripe tomatoes, sliced inch thick (12 slices)
  • freshly ground pepper

Method

Put the egg yolks, lemon juice, chili-garlic paste, mustard, and a pinch of salt in a bowl. Whisk or beat with an electric mixer for 2 minutes. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until the mayonnaise thickens.

Pick over the crab meat and remove any shell or bits of cartilage. Add the crab, fennel, celery, and red onion to the mayonnaise. Fold them in very gently.

Cook the bacon in a frying pan or under the broiler for 3 to 5 minutes on each side, until just crisp. Drain the bacon on paper towels and keep warm. Toast the slices of brioche.

To assemble the sandwich, put a lettuce leaf on 4 of the toasts. Arrange 3 slices of tomato on top of each lettuce leaf and season with salt and pepper. Then put the bacon on top of the tomatoes. Divide the crab among 4 slices of toast and put them, crab side up, on top of the bacon and tomato. Top with the other 4 slices of brioche toast, cut into quarters, and serve.

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