Monday, 21 December 2009

The 21st Century Housewife's© Scrumptious Crab Melts

This is such a busy time of year that sometimes the idea of having to prepare another meal is just that step too far. These Crab Melts are so easy, delicious and filling they really do save the day. Great for lunch with some chips or a salad, they also make a really warming dinner served with a nice bowl of soup. We had these with some chips on the day we were decorating the house for Christmas and they made a really special lunch on a busy (but fun!) day.

You can use canned crab meat, but fresh is really lovely. I buy mine ready prepared in a little pot from the grocery store. It’s expensive, but a little goes a long way. These are very rich; you only need one half of the ciabatta or panini each so this recipe serves 2.

½ cup white crab meat
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp finely chopped red pepper
1 tbsp finely chopped celery
2 tbsp mascarpone cheese
salt and pepper to taste
2 slices of Monterey Jack or Swiss cheese
1 small rectangular ciabatta bread, or 1 panini

Cut the ciabatta bread or panini in half, and put the halves in the oven on a baking sheet at about 350℉ (175℃) for five minutes to toast up a bit.

Meanwhile, mix the crab meat with the mustard, red pepper, celery and mascarpone cheese. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Remove the ciabatta or panini from the oven, and divide the crab mixture between the two halves. Cut the cheese slice slices in half and put two halves on top of the crab on each piece of ciabatta or panini.

Return the crab and cheese topped bread to the oven for five to ten minutes, until the cheese is bubbling and brown.

Serve one half of the panini or ciabatta to each person, allowing to cool a bit before you bite in - the cheese gets very hot!