Lan's Vietnamese Stir-Fried Crabs|
Mama Lan's Vietnamese Stir-Fried Crabs
12 lg Male blue crabs, cleaned
-and halved, with top
2 c All-purpose flour, seasoned
-with salt and pepper.
Vegetable oil for frying
6 tb Butter
6 tb Olive oil
3 Stalks lemongrass, tops
-discarded, bulbs finely
4 tb Minced garlic
3 tb Hot pepper flakes
3 tb Kosher salt
3 tb Sugar
3 Piece fresh ginger peeled
1 bn Green onions, chopped
4 Or 5 fresh serrano chiles,
-thinly sliced into rounds
We're seeing more and more of the live Eastern blue crabs out here on
the West coast. So far mainly in Asian markets++I have yet to run
across any at Safeway. While the Asians are busy furnishing good,
fresh things to eat at very reasonable prices, Safeway and it's ilk
are so busy trying to satisfy our banking needs that they don't seem
to pay much attention to food anymore.
This can be prepared using either the blue guys or the big ol'
Dungeness crabs. This reminds me of the first Vietnamese dish I ever
tried, "Roast Crab" at Thanh Long on Judah street in San Francisco
years ago. That dish alone won my ever-lasting respect for Vietnamese
cuisine. It too used butter, though I'm relatively sure it also used
Chinese fermented black beans for their savory kick and the crab
wasn't flour coated before frying.
Dredge the crabs in the seasoned flour. In a large skillet heat oil
to a depth of 1/2 inch. Add the top shells and fry over fairly high
heat, turning, until crispy on both sides. Remove to paper towels to
drain. Discard the cooking oil. Return the pan to medium heat and
add the butter and olive oil. when the butter melts, add the
lemongrass, garlic and pepper flakes and saute for about 30 seconds.
Add the crab halves and sprinkle with the salt and sugar. Stir well.
Add the ginger, green onions and serrano chiles. Cook, stirring
often for 3 to 4 minutes. Place the crab tops, hollow side up, on a
platter. Tuck the crab pieces in the shells. Pour all of the pan
juices over the stuffed shells. Serve at once, with steamed jasmine
rice and plenty of napkins for messy hands.
From "The Chesapeake Bay Crab Cookbook", by John Sheilds
(Aris/Addison- Wesley, 1992).
From the San Francisco Chronicle, 9/2/92.
NOTE: To convert to Dungeness, three to four blues equal a pound and
a half of Dungeness crabs.
Posted by Stephen Ceideberg; September 9 1992.