Chef's Recipes

Love, Tilly Devine: Spanner crab, fennel, chilli and lemon bruschetta

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for Love, Tilly Devine's Spanner crab, fennel, chilli and lemon bruschetta.

By Tim Webber
  • 20 mins preparation
  • 5 mins cooking
  • Serves 4
  • Print
Love, Tilly Devine: Spanner crab, fennel, chilli and lemon bruschetta
“Any kind of crab is beautiful prepared this way. If you’re boiling your own, include some of the brown meat mixed into a paste.” Tim Webber, Love, Tilly Devine


  • 200 gm cooked picked spanner crab meat
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds, crushed
  • Pinch of dried chilli flakes
  • 60 ml (¼ cup) extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • 1 Meyer lemon, thinly sliced into rounds (see note)
  • ½ fennel bulb, thinly sliced on a mandolin, fronds reserved
  • 2 tbsp flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped
  • 8 thin slices day-old sourdough bread
  • 1 garlic clove, halved


  • 1
    Combine crab, lemon juice, fennel seeds, chilli and 50ml oil in a bowl, carefully toss to combine, season to taste and set aside.
  • 2
    Combine Meyer lemon slices, fennel bulb and fronds and parsley in a bowl with remaining oil, season to taste and set aside.
  • 3
    Heat a large char-grill pan over high heat. Grill bread, turning once, until golden (1-2 minutes each side). Rub with cut-side of garlic, drizzle with oil and season to taste. Top with crab mixture and fennel and lemon salad and serve warm.


Note Meyer lemons are sweeter than other lemons. If unavailable, substitute 2 tsp juice and 1 tsp finely grated rind from any other type of lemon. This recipe is from the September 2011 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.
Drink Suggestion: 2009 Domaine de Bellivière Jasnières Prémices Chenin Blanc, Loire Valley, France.

  • undefined: Tim Webber