Crabmeat Timbale with Baby Greens and a Papaya Seed Dressing

serves 4

1 pound fresh crabmeat

1 Tablespoon whole grain mustard

1/2 cup whipping cream, whipped

1/2 teaspoon minced lemon zest

1 Tablespoon lemon juice

salt and white pepper to taste

1/4 cup canola oil

1/2 cup rice flour sticks (vermicelli) broken into 2-inch pieces

5 ounces baby greens (mesclun mix), washed and dried

Papaya seed dressing

cucumber slices, red radish wedges and papaya slices for garnish

1.   Squeeze the excess water from the crabmeat and place in a medium-sized mixing bowl. Pick through to remove any shell fragments that remain. Add the mustard, whipped cream, lemon zest and juice and mix gently to combine. Season with salt and white pepper. Reserve.

2.   In a small skillet, heat the canola oil until it is smoking hot. Have a slotted spoon and a plate with a few sheets of paper towel on it next to the stove. Add half of the rice sticks to the hot oil; they will puff; as they do, remove them immediately from the oil with the slotted spoon and drain on the paper towels. Repeat with the remaining rice sticks. Sprinkle with a little kosher salt.

3.   To serve, line four small ramekins with plastic wrap (to keep the crabmeat from sticking) and divide the crabmeat mixture between them, compacting it to make a firm mold. Invert the timbale onto the center of a chilled salad plate. Toss the greens with enough dressing to lightly coat each leaf and arrange around the timbale. Garnish with the cucumber slices, radish wedges, papaya slices and crisp rice sticks.

Papaya Seed Dressing

1/2 cup rice wine vinegar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup canola oil

1/4 cup chopped Vidalia onion

1/2 cup chopped fresh papaya

1 Tablespoon papaya seeds

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon dry mustard

1.   Combine all the ingredients above in a blender and mix until smooth.

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