It’s soft shell crab season. I had some almond meal left over from those grain-free and gluten-free muffins I made a while back, and decided to use it up.
Soft shelled crabs
Almond meal, enough to coat
1 egg (optional)
Oil, as below
If you are doing this for company, definitely use the egg, the meal will adhere better. I wasn’t having any company, so I opted out. Wasn’t feeling that well anyway (but never let that stop you from making something tasty to eat!)
Your fishmonger should clean and prepare your crabs for you. True softshells will be papery in texture. You do eat the shells (I just had to explain this to someone I ate lunch with earlier today).
Dip each crab in egg you’ve beaten to a froth in a bowl (if using).
Spread out almond meal with oregano and pepper, so you can roll it in the mix. Both sides, top and bottom.
Get some extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, or avocado oil going in the skillet. I don’t deep fry these, I simply watch to see when they need turning. Turn heat to medium high, and when a drop of water will cause the oil to sizzle, your crabs are ready for their destination.
Cook, say three minutes a side (make sure they’re no longer translucent), and then flip back over for another 30 seconds on the first side. Remove, serve with lime, which you will squeeze over your crab.
When you cut them, you will discover in the belly area some green material. That’s the tomale, which has the same equivalent in the lobster. Sometimes you will also discover orange material. That’s roe. Is all good. Trust me. The soft shell is good, too.
If you have leftover crab, cut it up and put it into a salad and take it to work (which is why I had that discussion at lunch today….)
Crabs: Stew Leonards (a small chain based in Connecticut). Almond Meal: Trader Joe’s.