Lump Crab Scallion Cakes, Tarragon Aïoli, and Fennel Slaw

Lump Crab Scallion Cakes

1 pound jumbo lump crab meat (cooked)
2 bunches scallion greens, snipped
1 tablespoon fennel seed, toasted and ground
1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon
1 cup tomato, peeled, seeded, and diced small
1 medium red onion, minced
2 eggs
1⁄4 cup whole grain mustard
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1⁄2 tablespoon hot chili sauce (Tabasco is fine)
1 cup toasted bread crumbs (use more if needed)
extra-virgin olive oil as needed
salt and cracked white pepper to taste

In a mixing bowl fold together all ingredients minus the bread crumbs, oil, salt, and pepper. Slowly add bread crumbs until mixture comes together but is not dry. Add olive oil and seasonings into mixture and continue folding until a loose ball can be formed from it. Portion the cakes into 2-ounce balls and shape them into cylinders. Sear the cakes with butter and olive oil in a cast-iron skillet and place in a 375 degree oven to warm through.

Fennel Slaw

1 large or 2 small heads fennel, shaved thin, fronds chopped
1 small red onion, shaved thin
1 lemon zested and juiced
1 tablespoon chopped tarragon
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
2 ounces champagne or white-wine vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
4 ounces extra-virgin olive oil
salt and cracked black pepper to taste

Place all ingredients in a mixing bowl and toss. Let this set for several hours, tossing occasionally, to allow the flavors to meld.

Tarragon Aïoli

3 egg yolks
1⁄2 teaspoon fresh garlic, chopped
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon champagne vinegar
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
1⁄2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup chopped tarragon

Whip the egg yolks with the garlic, mustard, lemon juice, vinegar, and salt until they are bright yellow and frothy. Slowly drizzle in the oils until the eggs emulsify and become stable, like a mayonnaise. Whip in the chopped tarragon.

Place the fennel slaw on a plate and some of the tarragon aïoli around on the side. Lay the crab cakes through the sauce and garnish with finely grated lemon zest and cracked black pepper. Serves 6 (2 crab cakes per serving).