Restaurant August's BLT: Buster Crab, Lettuce, and Tomato Sandwich

Recipe courtesy of Chef John Besh at Restaurant August
TOTAL TIME: 40 min
Prep: 30 min
Inactive Prep: --
Cook: 10 min
YIELD: 4 servings
LEVEL: Intermediate


  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 4 buster crabs
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 2 cups red, yellow, and green grape tomatoes, peeled
  • 1/2 teaspoon 25-year-old balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon minced chives, plus 1 teaspoon chopped chives for garnish
  • 4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 slices brioche, toasted
  • 4 teaspoons aioli
  • 1 tablespoon micro greens, or any lettuce sprout
  • 1 tablespoon chive oil, for garnish, optional
  • 1 tablespoon beet juice, for garnish, optional
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      In a large saute pan, heat the canola oil over a medium-high flame. Season the buster crabs with 1 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Season the flour with salt and pepper and combine with the cornmeal in a shallow dish or large bowl. Toss crabs in the mixture to coat. Carefully place the crabs into the hot oil and cook for 1 minute on each side. Remove from pan and drain on paper towels.

      Meanwhile, season the tomatoes with salt, pepper, vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon chives, and olive oil. Place the tomatoes over the toasted brioche croutons and place on a serving plate. Place drained crabs over the tomatoes and top each of them with a dollop of aioli. Place micro greens or any lettuce sprout on top of aioli.

      To serve, garnish plate with additional chopped chives, chive oil, and beet juice, if desired.


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