Serves 4

Lexington market was once the centre of fresh produce in Baltimore. Today it still has a few stalls trading in fresh produce, but the majority are fried-chicken and Asian fast-food stalls. The centrepiece of the market is Faidley's seafood stall which advertises the best crab cakes in Baltimore. The queue was 50 deep the day we went on one of our crab-cake misions, so we gave it a miss and settled for some raw clams and oysters and a large helping of fried chicken gizzards. I lifted their famous recipe from Chesapeake Bay Cooking. Try to buy fresh crabs for this, cooked or alive, and avoid using the pasteurised or frozen meat as it tends to be dry. If you are preparing the crabs yourself then save the shells for the bisque below.

Lexington market was once the centre of fresh produce in Baltimore. Today it still has a few stalls trading in fresh produce, but the majority are fried-chicken and Asian fast-food stalls. The centrepiece of the market is Faidley's seafood stall which advertises the best crab cakes in Baltimore. The queue was 50 deep the day we went on one of our crab-cake misions, so we gave it a miss and settled for some raw clams and oysters and a large helping of fried chicken gizzards. I lifted their famous recipe from Chesapeake Bay Cooking. Try to buy fresh crabs for this, cooked or alive, and avoid using the pasteurised or frozen meat as it tends to be dry. If you are preparing the crabs yourself then save the shells for the bisque below.

450g freshly picked chunky white crabmeat
100g matzo meal or dried white breadcrumbs

4tbsp mayonnaise
1 egg
1tbsp Dijon mustard
1tbsp Worcestershire sauce
A few drops of Tabasco
Salt and freshly ground white pepper
Vegetable or corn oil for frying
Olive oil for frying

Spread the crab meat out on a flat tray and check for any bits of shell, then scatter over the matzo. Mix the mayonnaise, egg, mustard, Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco together, then very carefully mix with the crab, taking care not to break the pieces of crab down too much. Leave the mix for 3-4 minutes then carefully form into eight round cakes. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Heat about 2-3cm of vegetable oil and olive oil mixed in a deep-sided frying pan and carefully fry the cakes for about 2-3 minutes on each side until golden. Serve with tartare sauce, tomato relish and salad.

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