Pan Fried Soft Shell Blue Crabs
blue crab
blue crabs

Blue Crab Recipes

Pan Fried Soft Shell Blue Crabs

(with Lemon, Capers, & Herbs)

8 medium-to-large Maryland soft crabs, cleaned, and
patted dry with paper towels,
all purpose flour for dredging
10 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon juice from lemon
1 teaspoon sherry vinegar
1 teaspoon drained tiny capers, chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh tarragon leaves
1 scallion, minced
ground black pepper
lots of paper towels to keep your face clean

First, prep and dredge the crabs in flour. Then pat off the excess flour to help avoid caking. Next heat two 11- or 12- inch heavy-bottomed frying pans over medium-high heat until pans are quite hot, about 3 minutes. Add 4 tablespoons of butter to each pan, swirling pans to keep butter from burning as it melts. When the foam subsides, turn the heat to high temperature and add four crabs with the skins down, to each pan. Cover each pan with a splatter screen and cook while adjusting the heat as necessary to keep the butter from burning, until crabs turn reddish brown. This should take about 3 minutes. Turn the crabs with a spatula or tongs and cook until second side is browned, about 3 minutes. Drain crabs on paper towel-lined plate.

Set one pan to the side. Pour off butter from other pan and remove from heat. Add all remaining ingredients (including remaining 2 tablespoons butter and pepper to taste) to this still-warm pan. Swirl pan to melt butter. Arrange two crabs on each of four plates. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of sauce over each plate of crabs and serve immediately. The pan sauce is tart and powerfully flavored. You only need about one tablespoon per serving.

This is simply delicious.

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• Scientific classification:
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Crustacea
Class: Malacostraca
Order: Decapoda
Suborder: Pleocyemata
Infraorder: Brachyura
Family: Portunidae
Genus: Callinectes
Species: C. sapidus

Also see:
Maryland blue crab
Soft Shell blue crabs

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