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green cat gallery crab dip

 by Steph Brady

I’ve been making this crab dip for 16 of the 19 years of Salida Art Walk. I used to offer other appetizers but once I started offering this particular dip the patrons wouldn’t hear of me serving anything else. I serve this on Friday night and often, shrimp ceveché on Saturday. Many of my patrons come in on Friday just to sample this crab dip. Some have been coming for all of the 16 years. It’s almost like a green cat staple and it’s not unusual to serve 50 to 120 people. This dip is easy to make and takes only minutes. Now, I’m a cook that never measures – it’s a little of this or that – so I’ve tried to convey what I do. I usually make about four times this recipe for Art Walk.

Because this is Salida, it’s imitation crab, which is really just a white fish. But who would name their recipe “imitation crab dip”? And how ironic that the green cat would serve a fish? This is really a no-fail recipe. Dink around with it. It’s pretty versatile.

Crab mixture
1 (12 oz) flaked imitation crab, cut up into small pieces
1/3 to 1/2 cup red onion, chopped
2 stalks thinly sliced celery
1 clove garlic, skin removed, chopped very fine
1/2 jalapeno chopped very fine (depending upon how much heat that pepper is packing! Scale back if too hot or add more if not enough)*
1 teaspoon of lemon juice
Dash of salt and pepper

1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 to 3 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon celery seed
1/2 teaspoon dill
2 heaping tablespoons sour cream
2 splashes of Red Hot or Tabasco
1/4 cup milk
Take the crab mixture and mix together, then put sauce into a container and shake well till all is blended. The sauce should be not too runny or too lumpy, but smooth. Add more milk if it’s too lumpy or add more mayonnaise if too runny. Pour over crab mixture. Stir in thoroughly. Refrigerate till ready to serve. Serve with crackers.

*remember, jalapeno tends to get hotter as it sets.

Enjoy … meow