For the crab cakes:
3 T. unsalted butter
1 c. finely chopped yellow onion
1/3 c. finely chopped celery
1/4 c. finely chopped red pepper
1 T. dry mustard
1/2 t. cayenne pepper
1 lb. lump crab meat
2/3 c. mayonnaise
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 c. fresh bread crumbs
1 T. finely grated lemon zest
4 T. chopped flat-leaf parsley
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 c. fine dried bread crumbs
For the ginger-citrus vinaigrette:
3/4 c. peanut oil
finely grated zest of 1 lemon or lime
1/4 c. lemon or lime juice
2 T. grated, peeled fresh ginger
1 fresh jalapeño chili pepper, seeded and minced
8 c. mixed torn lettuce
peanut oil frying
To make the crab cake:
In a sauté pan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the onion and sauté until translucent, about 8 minutes. Add the celery and bell pepper and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the mustard and cayenne pepper and cook 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly to prevent scorching. Transfer to a bowl and let cool completely. Add the crab meat, mayonnaise, egg, fresh bread crumbs, lemon zest, and parsley. Fold together gently until all the ingredients are thoroughly incorporated; do not over mix. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Form into 8 cakes about 1/2 in. thick.
Place the dried bread crumbs on a plate, working with 1 cake at a time, coat the cakes evenly with the crumbs. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or as long as overnight; the cakes will hold together better if they have been chilled.
To make the vinaigrette:
In a bowl, whisk the peanut oil, lemon or lime zest and juice, ginger, and jalapeño. Season to taste with sugar and salt.
To cook the crab cakes:
In a large frying pan over medium-high heat, pour in oil to a depth of 1 in. When the oil is shimmery, slip the cakes into the pan, working in batches if the pan is too crowded. Fry, turning once, until golden, 2-3 minutes on each side.
To serve, divide the lettuce among 6-8 individual plates. Place the warm crab cakes atop the greens and drizzle with the vinaigrette. Serve at once.