1 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning optional, a mix of paprika, cayenne, and extra salt can be substituted
1 large egg
Kosher salt to taste
All purpose flour for dredging
Flavorless oil for cooking the cakes
Fresh green salad
Dollop of spicy mayonnaise optional
Fresh cut chives optional
Wilt the mushrooms and remove the water
Pick the lions mane mushrooms into pieces to resemble crab meat. Put the mushrooms in a pan with the water and salt, cover and bring to a simmer, stir, cover, and cook for a few minutes until the mushrooms are wilted and have given up their juice.
Allow the mushrooms to cool, then squeeze out as much water as you possibly can. This step is important as mushrooms, unlike crab, contain lots of water.
Mix with the crab cake mix
Combine the mushrooms with the cake ingredients and mix well. Taste a bit of the mixture (you can cook it if raw egg weirds you out) adjust the seasoning for salt and anything else you’re looking for, then allow the crab cake mix to rest for at least 15 minutes to allow the breadcrumbs to hydrate, which will make forming the cakes easier. In a perfect world, you’ll let it sit overnight.
To cook the cakes, form 4 oz patties of the mixture (it will be delicate, don’t worry—the egg will set as they cook). For the most refined look, form the cakes using a ring mold.
Heat a pan with a few tablespoons of oil.
Heat an oven to 350F. Meanwhile, gently dredge the cakes in flour on both sides, tap off the excess, and brown gently on medium heat. When one side of the cakes are golden brown, gently flip the cakes and transfer the pan to the oven and cook until hot throughout, about 10 minutes.
Remove the cakes to a plate with a fresh green salad, top with a dollop of spicy mayonnaise or aioli if using, sprinkle with chives and serve with lemon wedges on the side. The cakes are also excellent served on a bun like you would a burger.