Thursday, August 20, 2015

Spicy Soft Shell Crabs

Spicy Soft Shell Crabs

Soft shell crabs have always frightened me.  I just couldn’t imagine a world where the shell of a crab would be soft enough that you could just eat the entire crab without having to pick out the meat.

Even after a blue crab had molted its hard shell, it’s hard to imagine that the soft shell underneath would be enjoyable to dine on.  Thinking about other seafood, the shell of a shrimp seems pretty soft yet if you miss a piece during the peeling process it's very unpleasant to chomp down on in a finished dish.

But somehow soft shell crabs are different.  The crispy fried light batter seems to become an extension of the shell.  Each bite is a mixture of seasoned crispiness and all that succulent almost sweet crab meat.   

This is the way to go if you love blue crabs.  It’s all the deliciousness without all of the work. 

Scroll to the bottom of the page for  an extra video tutorial on how to turn the leftover flour and egg wash into spicy scallion fritters.

Spicy Soft Shell Crabs
Prep time: 5 min
Cook time: 5 min
Servings: 1-2

  • 2 soft shell crabs, cleaned
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup hot sauce
  • 1 cup gluten free flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp old bay
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp cayenne
  • ½ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • oil for frying
Video Tutorial: 

  1. In a medium bowl beat together the egg, milk and hot sauce and set aside.
  2. In another medium bowl stir together the gluten free flour, salt, old bay, garlic powder, cayenne, and crushed red pepper flakes.
  3. Dredge each crab in flour and shake off the excess then dip it into the egg wash before returning to the seasoned flour to coat well.  Shake off the excess.
  4. To fry them, in a cast iron skillet over a medium high heat, add enough vegetable oil so that it’s about ½ inch deep and once the oil starts to shimmer add the crabs to the pan and use a tongs to straighten out the legs for a nicer finished presentation.
  5. Let them fry for about 3 minutes on the first side, or until they’re golden brown then flip them over and let them go for another 2 minutes or until that side is golden brown.
  6. Drain them on paper towels and they’re ready to eat.  

Bonus tutorial on how to turn the leftover flour and egg wash into spicy scallion fritters.

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