Layered Crab And Spinach Terrine

I made this for the first time over 20 years ago. I’ve served it many times as a first course at dinner parties and it makes a lovely light summer lunch.

Layered Crab And Spinach Terrine
From the California Culinary Academy

Crab Layer
1/2 pound crab meat, picked over and flaked
1/4 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon Dijon Mustard
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 large eggs

Spinach Layer
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons flour
1/2 cup whipping cream
2/3 cup half and half
1 1/4 pounds cooked spinach
drained and squeezed to remove excess moisture
3 eggs
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon sugar
salt to taste

Mix together,
1 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon finely minced roasted red pepper
1 clove of minced garlic
salt and pepper to taste.
Chives for garnish

Preheat oven to 375°F. For the crab layer: In a medium bowl combine the crab, sour cream, lemon juice, mustard, salt, pepper and cayenne. Stir in eggs and set mixture aside.

For the Spinach layer: Melt butter in a heavy saucepan until foamy. Whisk in flour and cook for 3 minutes over medium heat, stirring constantly. Whisk in whipping cream and half-and-half. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer slowly 10 minutes. Stir occasionally, scraping down the sides and around the bottom as necessary. Mixture will thicken as it cooks. Remove from heat and stir in spinach. Let cool. Stir in eggs, one at a time then add black pepper, nutmeg, sugar and salt.

To assemble the terrine: Grease an 8 cup loaf pan/terrine pan with butter. Spoon half the crab mixture in the bottom and cover with all of the spinach mixture. Spoon remaining crab mixture over the spinach. Set the terrine in a baking pan and pour 1 inch of hot water into the baking pan. Bake uncovered until golden brown and puffy. Approximately 30 to 45 minutes. Cool on a rack and then refrigerate.

To serve, run a knife around the edge and invert on to a serving platter. Slice about 1/2 thick slices and place two on each plate. Decorate plate with a lettuce leaf and place a dollop of the sauce on the lettuce leaf. Garnish with a few chives.

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