Spicy Crab Dip recipe

2 medium shallots, quartered
1 lemongrass stalk, bottom third only, tough outer layers removed, cut into a few pieces
1 3–4" piece ginger, peeled, coarsely chopped
1 serrano chile, preferably starting to turn orange, halved, seeds removed if desired
4 medium garlic cloves
2 Tbsp. double-concentrated tomato paste
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. Diamond Crystal or ½ tsp. Morton kosher salt, plus more
1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
4 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
2 Tbsp. mayonnaise
8 oz. claw crabmeat, picked over
3 medium scallions, finely chopped
½ large bunch cilantro, tough stems discarded, leaves and tender stems finely chopped
2 Tbsp. store-bought fried shallots or garlic (optional)

Pulse or blend shallots, lemongrass, ginger, chile, garlic, tomato paste, sugar, 1 tsp. Diamond Crystal or ½ tsp. Morton kosher salt, and ½ cup water in a food processor or blender until a coarse purée forms.
Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium-high. Scrape purée into pan and cook, stirring often, until mixture darkens and thickens to the consistency of tomato paste, 12–15 minutes. If it begins to stick and brown, stir in a little water (about 1 Tbsp.), scraping up any browned bits with a wooden spoon. (You should have about ? cup.)
Transfer mixture to a small bowl and vigorously mix in cream cheese and mayonnaise. Stir in crabmeat, half of the scallions, and half of the cilantro. Taste dip and season with more salt if needed.
Transfer dip to a serving bowl. Top with remaining scallions and cilantro, then with fried shallots (if using). Serve with shrimp chips or Ritz crackers.