Friday, December 10, 2010

Roasted Dungeness Crab with Garlic Noodles



It's Dungeness crab season! You have no idea how excited this makes me. Hell, I even used an exclamation point. When I was much, much younger, my dad would bring home ginormous King crab legs and eat them in front of my brother and I. When he was feeling generous, he'd let us have a bite or two, but would quickly return to selfishly hoarding the rest for himself. At about the age of 11, when we were old enough to wield our own crackers and sharp crab forks, he finally gave us our own legs to attack and excavate. I still made him crack my crab for years after, complaining of the pain inflicted by sharp exoskeletons. I was kind of a brat--but a brat that loved crab.

There's nothing quite like fresh crab--sweet, salty and succulent. None of that canned or imitation stuff will ever do after trying it once. And for those of us who grew up cracking open legs and picking at claws? Well, don't even think about trying to feed us anything else--we're likely to cringe behind your back. Now, my favorite crab is admittedly of the King variety despite its spiny legs. It's just easier to eat. However, Dungeness crab is the perfect crab for dinner parties or meals with people you actually want to talk to. Not that I actually wanted to talk to my family during dinner, but if I did, the task at hand takes time and creates the perfect excuse for a slow, leisurely dinner. But don't invite those friends who don't like getting down and dirty--picking apart Dungeness crab is messy business that may or not require a full-body protective frock...

When I got the go-ahead to purchase this crab, I knew I wanted to cook it in something to add a bit more flavor. Saveur came to the rescue with a spicy roasted crab dish--perfect for a certain brother who demands I add red pepper flakes to everything (he is usually ignored). The marinade, albeit messy, adds a hint of spice and garlic to the meat, bringing a very welcome and new dimension. I had also originally planned to make a side of garlic noodles to accompany the crab, but once I got word that my dad wanted some crusty sourdough bread with softened butter, I decided to forego the carbohydrate overload. I obviously managed to get my garlic noodles anyway. At the end of dinner, I picked the rest of the meat out of the shell--the perfect accompaniment to today's lunch of garlic noodles. Serve the shelled crab with the noodles, or toss with crab meat, and you've got a winning combo for lunch or dinner. (Please note, that if you should want to save leftover crab for your noodles, it is likely that your crab will require a note such as this one to fend off familial crab thieves).








Spicy Roasted Dungeness Crab
Serves 4
Adapted from Saveur

1 bunch fresh parsley, stems trimmed 2 tsp. fresh thyme 4 cloves garlic
1/2 Tbsp. red pepper flakes 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil 3-4 turns of freshly ground pepper 4-5 lbs. cooked dungeness crabs










Clean the crab by removing top shell and gray gills. Remove any dark, fatty tissue (most grocery stores will do this for you if asked). Using a nutcracker, crack all of the crab legs and split crabs in half down the middle. Place the remainder of the ingredients in food processor--you will end up with a thick, paste-like marinade. Place crab in a shallow baking dish, and using your hands, rub marinade over all of the legs and crab bodies, taking care to cover the places where the crab has been cracked. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours. When ready, heat oven to 400F and bake for 10 minutes.









Garlic Noodles

1 lb. cooked noodles
1 medium head garlic, minced
4 Tbsp. butter
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1.5 Tbsp. dark soy sauce
3 Tbsp. freshly grated parmesan
fresh parsley, chopped (optional)











In the middle of large wok or saute pan, melt butter and olive oil on medium-low heat into a small pool. Add minced garlic directly into the pool and allow to infuse oil. When garlic is fragrant and soft, add noodles and coat in garlic sauce. Turn up heat and allow to get get crispy and slightly golden. Sprinkle soy sauce over noodles and mix well. Toss in cheese, sprinkle with parsley and serve.

Note: Thin noodles work the best, such as spaghetti or angel hair, but linguini also did the trick. If you want bi-colored noodles, remove half the noodles from pan, then add in soy sauce, tossing noodles. Return rest of noodles to pan & continue.

26 comments:

Sommer J said...

You've got a piece of my heart here. I grew up in Maryland and summer/fall is crab season. I miss it sooooo much. We have frozen crab legs sold at the commissary that's fine, but that canned crap? The heck outta here. And someone actually told me that imitation crab meat tastes just like real crab meat! No.Way.

Great post and recipe. Will have to give this a shot for sure. I am sure the frozen legs will do for now. Those photos makes me even hungrier.

Carolyn said...

Looks fantastic! Your dad hording the crab to himself reminds me of a lion fending off his food from the lion cubs, lol. I do love crab, and this recipe seems like a great way to cook it.

Jara said...

the crab looks exceptionally delicious. I love crab season too!

Roxan said...

Dungeoness crab has a season? I had no idea! I also love dungeoness crab, it's my favorite crustacean. Have you ever heard of the Boiling Crab? There aren't any here in WLA but it's really popular... and fun. You should look it up and go if you haven't been yet! Anyways, I always order dungeoness crab there.

Victoria said...

This looks awesome! I'm glad you're enjoying Dungeness crab season :) Looking forward to more fun crab-filled posts, haha.

Barbara l Vino Luci Style said...

Oh my yum! Like you, we love Dungeness Crab; I always bought two when my girls were old enough to help and we made a morning of picking those little buggars clean to make a dish we all wanted each year; always something different.

This looks fabulous and with or without the crab, I'm making those garlic noodles; WOW!

Your story reminded me too...my mother had a thing about Sara Lee Cheesecake. Bought just for her. Oh the times I would sneak into the fridge for just the thinnest of tastes. She either didn't know or did and never mentioned but I'm just left thinking...Sara Lee? We've come a long way baby!

Angie's Recipes said...

This looks mouthwatering!

A Little Yumminess said...

We love crab season...were just up in Bodega Bay for a crab feast! My hubby makes a version of the crab recipe you have above with basil, garlic and chillies. I have been looking for a good garlic noodle recipe...will try this one!

sara @ CaffeIna said...

omg omg omg you needed to put 3 exclamation points! I love crab. And I love noodles. And you totally have to come to the bay area and make me this! I beg you!

Lara said...

I love that last photo of the crab. Every Christmas, each family member at my house gets their own whole crab. I will see if they are up to a new flavor this year.

Baker Street said...

Oh my god!! this makes for a perfect meal! i'd love to be invited to your house someday! lol.

Jean said...

Haha! Now I understand! My husband said he didn't hear me say the tarts were for post photo session. Oh well, his reaction at getting caught eating them was worth it--too funny!

The crab and noodles look awesome!

whatsfordinneracrossstatelines said...

Dungeness is my favorite! I love the idea of it with the garlic noodles. I'd have to have bread and butter too though! What, I like carbs! I like the marinade on it. I'm going to eat it, till I get sick of it, while it's still affordable!
-Gina-

Monet said...

Just too tempting...I'm drooling right now! Crab and pasta? Wow! I had never really tried crab until Ryan and I moved to Baltimore. It took me about 5 seconds to fall in love. I miss being on the East Coast for this very reason! So much good seafood. Thank you for sharing with me. I hope you have a great Monday!

A SPICY PERSPECTIVE said...

Girl, I am all over this! I also look forward to soft-shell crab season and Dungeness crab season--it's like Christmas for you mouth!

Kristina @ spabettie said...

oh, my... I want this for breakfast!!

I too grew up crabbing (had my own pots!) and recall many meals sitting at the counter cracking crab... oh YUM.

this looks fabulous...

fortheloveofyum said...

I love this recipe. The pictures are making me salivate! When you posted the pics on twitter my jaw literally dropped because the crab looked so delicious. I need to get my hands on some Dungeness crab asap.

Whoever invented imitation crab is not in my good books!

Savory Sweet Living said...

Wow, I'm getting so hungry just looking at these pictures. The crab and garlic noodles are just a great combination.

Brie: Le Grand Fromage said...

mmm, crab. my wicked sweet tooth likes snow crab the best, but being from Maryland, I've never turned down a crab dish. delicious recipes.

Chow and Chatter said...

oh wow amazing recipe I want some so so bad

julie said...

Oh how I love crab! Your preparation looks really delicious. Now you've got me craving crab!

Evan @swEEts said...

Growing up on the east coast I was brought up eating Blue crabs, but dungeness crabs are just as good! Your dish looks absolutely delicious.. everything about it. Living in TX we don't get many opportunities to eat crab, so I'll just eat vicariously through the screen.. I can't wait to see these crab cakes you come up with!

blackbookkitchendiaries said...

this looks so good :) i am drooling right now just looking at it...yum!

Stephanie @ Per l'Amore del Cibo said...

I'm a huge fan of carbs, especially in the form of noodles, but this is one of those dishes where I might actually go for the meat instead. This all looks beyond amazing.

NOORISH said...

I love everything about this recipe. Hands down, crab is one of my favorite things to eat. It is definitely worth the effort. I would eat pounds and pounds of crab when I was a child...and I haven't grown out of that habit. I will be buying some crab from the farmers market next week, and this will be the first thing on the menu!

Rich said...

Wow, this is an absolutely stunning dish. I didn't grow up with dungeness crab, but I absolutely love the stuff. This looks perfect.

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