Dungeness Crab Beignets with Avocado Hollandaise

J Vineyards & Winery has been at the forefront of the wine and food experience since our first tasting program launched in 1999. All of the recipes have been created by our J Culinary Team to pair perfectly with our exceptional portfolio of varietal and sparkling wines.

Serves Makes 24 Beignets


For Beignets:
2 teaspoons olive oil
3 Serrano chilies, chopped fine
about a cup minced shallot
4 green onions, chopped fine
2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped fine
4 ounces Marscapone cheese
4 ounces Fromage Blanc
½ pound Dungeness crab meat
Kosher salt to taste

For Batter:
1 cup Wondra Flour, or all purpose flour
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 cup sparkling wine or beer

For Hollandaise:
2 shallots, peeled and sliced
2 cups J Viognier
½ cup champagne vinegar
8 white pepper corns
½ teaspoon brown mustard seeds
3 sprigs thyme
5 parsley stems
3 avocados
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup Merchant and Millers Meyer lemon olive oil (available at J)
1 teaspoon Tabasco
About a cup water


For Beignets:
Preheat fryer to 365º.In a small sauce pan over medium heat add oil, chilies and shallots; cook until just soft. Remove from heat. Add green onions and cilantro; set aside to cool. In a large bowl combine cheeses, crab meat and cooled vegetables; mix thoroughly. Shape into small bite-size balls about the size of a quarter. Place in refrigerator to chill.

For Batter:
Mix 1cup dry mixture with 1 cup sparkling wine or beer. Batter should resemble a slightly thin pancake batter.  Dredge the chilled crab balls through the batter, taking care to coat them completely. Using a slotted spoon, place crab balls one at a time into the oil so they are not touching. Fry until golden brown , about 2-3 minutes. Remove and drain on paper towels.

For Hollandaise:
Put the first seven ingredients in a saucepan on medium high heat and reduce to a half cup. ( If you reduce by more than a half cup add enough water to make it a half cup.)  Strain and set aside liquid to cool. Discard strained bits.  Place the remaining ingredients in  a blender along with the cooled wine reduction and blend until smooth. Place mixture in an aerosol whip cream canister and charge with two cartridges of CO2. Allow to rest for 30 minutes, then turn canister over and carefully press the button allowing the hollandaise to emerge. If you have never double charged a canister before, I recommend you discharge a little hollandaise into a plastic bag to get the feel for the pressure needed. The mixture is thick so store canister upside down. If you do not own an aerosol just spoon mixture onto plate (it will not be as light and airy).


Suggested Pairing: