Margaritaville Crab, Shrimp and Mushroom Dip
Menu Description: Crab, Shrimp and Mushroom Dip - Our Signature Appetizer - jumbo lump blue crab meat, gulf shrimp and mushrooms simmered in a Cajun cream sauce and Served with toasted garlic bread. .
2 Tablespoons butter
1/4 Cup minced celery
1/4 Cup minced onion
1 Teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 Cups heavy cream
1-1/2 Cups sliced white mushrooms
1 Cup blue crab
1 Cup bay shrimp, cooked (smallest shrimp)
1/4 Teaspoon salt
1 Cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 Cup shredded monterey jack cheese
2 green onions, sliced
2 loaves Italian bread
1/2 Cup butter, melted (1 stick)
1/2 Teaspoon dried parsley flakes
1/4 Teaspoon garlic powder
Melt 2 tablespoons of butter over low heat in a large saucepan. Add celery, onions and red pepper flakes and simmer slowly (sweat) the ingredients over low heat for 20 minutes. You don't want the ingredients to turn brown, rather you want them to cook slowly until the celery softens and the onions begin to turn translucent.
Add cream, mushrooms, crab, shrimp and salt to the pan. Turn the heat up a bit until the liquid begins to bubble, then bring the heat back down and let the mixture simmer for 20 minutes or until it reduces to about 1/2 the volume and becomes thick. Watch the saucepan carefully to make sure the mixture doesn't bubble over. In the meantime, crank your oven up to broil.
Prepare the bread by cutting the loaves into 1/2-inch thick slices. Combine the dried parsley flakes and garlic powder with a stick of melted butter in a small bowl. Brush some of this garlic butter on each side of each bread slice and toast the bread under the hot broiler for 1 to 2 minutes per side or until the bread is toasted to a light brown.
When the dip has thickened pour it into an 8x8-inch casserole dish. Combine the shredded cheddar and jack cheese and sprinkle the cheese mixture over the dip. Broil the dip for 3 to 4 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Sprinkle sliced green onions over the top and serve hot with the garlic toast on the side, and some spoons or forks for spreading the dip onto the toast.