Finished hush puppies

Anna Mintz is a Publicist for Clarkson Potter, a division of Random House, and is an editor for The Recipe Club. Originally from Atlanta, she now lives in New York City and loves exploring NYC’s restaurant scene and trying out new recipes in her own kitchen.

If you believe that frying makes everything taste better, get the oil ready, because after putting one of these hush puppies into your mouth, you’ll quickly need countless more! I chose this recipe from The Epicurious Cookbook (Clarkson Potter, 2012) by Tanya Steel and the editors of Epicurious.com for a festive appetizer for a family dinner over the holidays, and boy did I make the right choice! They were so yummy that everyone was popping these hush puppies like grapes.

Mixed dough

Not only does the book provide a great hush puppy recipe, but it also gives the (easy!) recipe for a fabulous dip: Curried Honey-Mustard Sauce. After trying the dip, made of only honey, Creole mustard, and curry powder, I’m not sure I’ll ever need another sauce again! Creole mustard, a Louisiana specialty, may not be readily available at your local market, but you can substitute whole-grain Dijon mustard.

Adding crab

Mixing up the dough was incredibly simple, since the recipe calls for using packaged just-add-water cornbread mix. The dough was tasty, but adding the sweet chunks of lump crabmeat really put this recipe over the top.

Having a deep-fry thermometer will make the frying process easier, as oil that’s not hot enough will lead to greasy and soggy fritters. And to keep the oil temperature from dropping too much, cook the hush puppies in small batches as directed. You won’t believe your tastebuds!

Taking hush puppies out of frying pan

Crab Hush Puppies with Curried Honey-Mustard Sauce
Recipe from The Epicurious Cookbook

Yield: Makes about 30

¼ cup Creole mustard
¼ cup honey
1¾ teaspoons curry powder
1 cup just-add-water cornbread mix
¼ cup bottled clam juice
12 ounces fresh lump crab meat, diced
1 cup finely chopped green onions
Vegetable oil, for frying
Special equipment: Deep-fry thermometer

1. Stir the mustard, honey, and 1¼ teaspoons curry powder in a small bowl for dipping sauce.

2. Stir the cornbread mix, clam juice, and remaining ½ teaspoon curry powder in a medium bowl. Mix in the crab and ¾ cup of the onions.

3. Pour enough oil into a medium saucepan to reach a depth of 1½ inches. Attach a deep-fry thermometer to the side of the pan and heat the oil over medium heat to 320°F to 330°F. Working in batches, drop the batter into the oil by heaping teaspoonfuls. Fry until golden and cooked through, 1 to 1½ minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain.

4. Sprinkle the hush puppies with the remaining onions. Serve with dipping sauce.