McKenzie Makes: Soft Shell Crab “Amandine”

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I look forward to soft shell crab season every year and if it’s on a menu, I’m gonna eat it (see exhibit #1). When I detailed my love of these fragile crustaceans, my New York “mom” Susan shared this fabulous recipe that she adores and one that her husband obsesses over.

Finding fresh soft shell crabs at retail was a little bit of a challenge but The Lobster Place in Chelsea Market saved the day, putting aside six of them and cleaning them for me so I wouldn’t  have to kill the little guys on my own.

I had never made soft shell crabs on my own so I was a little nervous, but the recipe Susan provided was very straight forward and I even made a few additions of my own!  The key to this dish is the butter sauce and almonds….it really makes this dish! I made them gluten-free (like I always do) with gluten-free breadcrumbs and you couldn’t tell a difference!

One big and very important tip…..make sure to dry them completely before sautéing so the water and oil don’t mix together and create a disastrous and messy kitchen.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 cups gluten-free breadcrumbs
  • 6 soft shell crabs, cleaned (ask your fish monger to do it for you)
  • 1 bunch asparagus, cut on the bias into 1 inch pieces
  • 5 ears fresh corn, cut off cobb
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1/4 cup slivered or crushed almonds
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire Sauce (gluten-free)
  • Olive Oil
  • salt and pepper

To Make:

  • Blanch corn and asparagus (separately because they have different cooking times) and then sauté in olive oil
  • add tomatoes for a few seconds, season with salt and pepper and set aside to cool
  • create egg and gluten-free breadcrumb dredge and then season the crabs with salt and pepper and coat in the egg and then breadcrumbs and set aside
  • place butter, olive oil and worcestershire sauce in a pan over medium heat and saute crabs in pan till browned
  • remove crabs from pan and brown almonds (add more butter, oil and worcestershire sauce if needed)
  • spoon corn, asparagus and tomato mixture onto plate, place soft shell crabs on top and spoon almond and sauce on top
  • enjoy!
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