January 2020 Honorable Mention - Sun Dried Tomato Crab Cakes

Amici miei, my friends,

Felice anno nuovo! Happy New Year! Another year to learn and cook wonderful recipes from around Italy, the USA, and the world. In a way, this month's honorable mention recipe from the Bella Sun Luci recipe contest, Sun Dried Tomato Crab Cakes by chef Roma Campanaro, covers all of that. Chef Richie says: Think global, cook local. And...seasonal.

Wintertime has its challenges...and solutions. No high quality fresh, local tomatoes available? Use sun dried tomatoes. Fresh in-season fish like halibut not available? Use crab. And be creative, geographically. Many states/regions have their own traditional recipe for crab cakes like the San Francisco Bay's dungeness, which is what I used for this recipe; of course Maryland blue crab; and New Orleans (Cajun) sweet lump crabmeat are a few of many choices. And this recipe calls for an Italian twist with capers, parmesan, and basil.

Congratulations Chef Roma! You’ll receive a Bella Sun Luci gift box to keep up the creative flow and maybe next year you’ll win the contest!

I hope you chefs are creative with your entries to THIS YEAR’S contest and you perfect the next recipe YOU submit to the Bella Sun Luci recipe contest, happening now! Chef Richie also says: use A FEW of our products in your recipe (wink) and use a good amount so you’re showcasing the sun dried tomato component of the dish. This might help you win. 

Allora...so...please get cooking and enter your next recipe at www.bellasunluci.com soon! 

Happy cooking and recipe writing! Arrivederci, con amore,

Chef Richie





  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp Bella Sun Luci Sun Dried Tomato Pesto with Whole Pine Nuts
  • 2 tsp capers
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp grated Parmesan
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 tbsp Fresh Basil chopped 
  • ½ cup Italian bread crumbs
  • 1 lb jumbo lump crabmeat (lump can also be used)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In medium bowl mix all ingredients, except breadcrumbs and crab meat.
  3. Once mixture is blended throughly add bread crumbs and crabmeat.
  4. Then fold into egg mixture gently with hands or spatula trying not to break up crabmeat lumps.
  5. Spray baking sheet with oil.
  6. Form crab cakes into 6 large balls each approximately 4 oz and spray the tops with cooking spray.
  7. Bake for 20 minutes or until internal temperature is 155 degrees.
  8. Turn on Broiler and broil on high for approximately 1 minute or until tops are golden brown.
  9. Serves 3 people, 2 crab cakes each.
Chef Richie

About Chef Richie

As corporate chef for Bella Sun Luci, Richard "Chef Richie" Hirshen, whose culinary career spans more than 30 years, plays an instrumental role in product development, recipe creation, and cooking demonstrations.

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