MAKES ABOUT 6 SERVINGS
Courtesy of Loren Wood
· 4 quarts water
· 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
· Crab Boil, recipe follows (see note)
· 4 bay leaves
· 4 dried chile peppers
· 3 sprigs fresh thyme
· 1 head garlic, cloves separated and
· ¼ cup sea salt
· 2 lemons, halved
· 12 fresh crabs
· 3 pounds new potatoes, scrubbed
· 4 ears corn, shucked and cut into
· 1 (10-ounce) bag pearl onions,
· 1 (10-pound) bag ice
1. In a very large stockpot, bring 4
quarts water, vinegar, Crab Boil, bay
leaves, chiles, thyme, garlic, salt, and
lemons to a rolling boil over high heat.
Add crabs, potatoes, corn, and onions.
Return mixture to a rolling boil, and
cook for 5 minutes. Turn heat off, and
cover pot for 15 to 20 minutes.
2. Pour ice into pot. (This helps the
crabs absorb the seasonings and
prevents them from overcooking.) Let
crabs stand in water for at least 1 hour
before serving. Crabs can be served
warm or completely cooled.
MAKES ABOUT 1 CUP
· ¼ cup yellow mustard seeds
· 3 tablespoons coriander seeds
· 2 tablespoons sea salt
· 2 tablespoons dill sprigs
· 2 tablespoons whole allspice
· 1 tablespoon crushed red pepper
· 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
· 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1. In a small bowl, combine all ingredients.
On a large square of cheesecloth
or muslin, pile mixture in the center.
Bring cloth up and around mixture;
secure with kitchen twine like a sachet.
Instead of homemade Crab Boil, you
can substitute 1 (3-ounce) package
crab boil in a bag, such as Zatarain’s.
“HOLD ON THERE BUSTER”
When the crab comes out of the
shell, it’s soft. If you take it out
of the water then and there, it’s a
buster crab because it just busted
out of the shell. But you don’t
want that buster. You want it to
soak up the water and expand
for three hours, before the shell
becomes hard again.”
—CHEF ALEX PATOUT