Soft Shelled Crab

Page: 12 > Showing page 1 of 2
Author
mammascookin
Hamburger
  • Total Posts : 85
  • Joined: 2005/07/12 13:24:00
  • Location: des moines, IA
  • Status: offline
2005/08/10 12:57:55 (permalink)

Soft Shelled Crab

I need to know where to find this and a price and also how to prepare it. I have always asked my grandmother what she wants for her birthday. One year she wanted a live Maine Lobster, well I got her a live lobster, just not from Maine and she talked about that birthday forever and a day as I am her only "real" granddaughter. I have step and half siblings just not on her side of the family. Anyway, I asked her what she wanted for her birthday a few years back and she said she would love to try soft shell crab. I can't find this anywhere!!! Can someone please help me??? I don't think grandma is going to make it much longer as she has a ton of medical issues and her birthday has already passed but still, I can get it for no specific reason other than to treat grandma!

Any help would be greatly appreciated!!!!
#1

31 Replies Related Threads

    Diner-Lover
    Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 246
    • Joined: 2005/07/23 16:17:00
    • Location: Philly Burb, PA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/10 13:56:22 (permalink)
    I don't know much about soft shelled crabs, but I was touched by your desire to make them for your grandmother, so I did a quick Google search and came up with this website where you can order them frozen. (It says live crabs aren't currently available.) For other sites, you can just type "soft shell crabs" into a search engine where you'll also probably be able to find recipes. You could also post your question for recipes to cook the crabs once you have them on Roadfood's Recipes & Cooking Techniques forum.

    Here's the site I found to order crabs:

    http://lintonsseafood.safeshopper.com/13/cat13.htm?964
    #2
    mammascookin
    Hamburger
    • Total Posts : 85
    • Joined: 2005/07/12 13:24:00
    • Location: des moines, IA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/10 14:01:11 (permalink)
    Diner-Lover, Thanks so much!
    #3
    Tommy2dogs
    Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 348
    • Joined: 2004/07/13 08:49:00
    • Location: Chicago, IL
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/10 20:00:36 (permalink)
    I have been odering both Steamed Blue Crabs and softshells from Lintons for the past several years . They are excellent. IMHO sofshells cooked the simpler the better. Basic dusted in seasoned flour, saute in equal amounts of butter and olive oil until brown on both sides, remove crabs,add some white wine to pan,reduce scraping bottom, add fresh lemon juice and Fresh Chopped Italian Parsley,and handful of Toasted Slivered Almonds, remove from heat swirl in a few more chunks of butter and pour over crabs.
    #4
    BT
    Filet Mignon
    • Total Posts : 3589
    • Joined: 2004/07/03 13:19:00
    • Location: San Francisco, CA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/10 22:36:01 (permalink)
    My mom's softshell crab recipe: Take one softshell crab and dredge well in flour. Saute' in butter. When browned, flop between 2 slices of bread. EAT!

    Incidentally, I've been away from Maryland for a very long time now, so any of you folks still near the tidewater can correct me if I'm "all wet" (so to speak), but when it comes to crabs I recall being taught that if it ain't movin', it ain't cookin'. In other words, and this would go especially if you have to order them over the internet, they should be clearly ALIVE when you get them (usually they are packed in wet seaweed or something like it). If they are dead, you probably shouldn't eat them.
    #5
    TJ Jackson
    Filet Mignon
    • Total Posts : 4538
    • Joined: 2003/07/26 22:24:00
    • Location: Cincinnati, OH
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/10 23:08:09 (permalink)
    let me get this straight

    you eat the whole crab - outer shell, claws, innards, eyes, etc etc.....??

    (still learning the roadfood mythos, sorry)
    #6
    BT
    Filet Mignon
    • Total Posts : 3589
    • Joined: 2004/07/03 13:19:00
    • Location: San Francisco, CA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/10 23:11:48 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by TJ Jackson

    let me get this straight

    you eat the whole crab - outer shell, claws, innards, eyes, etc etc.....??

    (still learning the roadfood mythos, sorry)


    Absolutely!
    #7
    Michael Hoffman
    Double-chop Porterhouse
    • Total Posts : 18259
    • Joined: 2000/07/01 08:52:00
    • Location: Gahanna, OH
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/10 23:15:50 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by TJ Jackson

    let me get this straight

    you eat the whole crab - outer shell, claws, innards, eyes, etc etc.....??

    (still learning the roadfood mythos, sorry)

    Yep. Eyes and all. You put that sucker between two slices of toast and, if you're a weak-kneed wimp you turn the sandwich around so that the eyes are facing away from you. Well, of course, there's no outer shell, so to speak. That's why they call them soft-shell crabs. They've molted.
    #8
    ocdreamr
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 1109
    • Joined: 2003/03/12 22:03:00
    • Location: Wilmington, NC
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 00:07:41 (permalink)
    Sorry to disagree, but you don't eat the eyes or gills. Everything else yep, you eat. According to the Linton site, when you get the frozen ones they are already cleaned. But if you get them alive, you remove the apron on the bottom(the capitol for females & the washington monument for males), then using kitchen shears, cut off the face (this includes the eyes guys). After the face has been removed you can easily lift the points of the shell & cut off the gills.

    Ocdreamr, whose been eating soft crabs since I was a little girl & learned to cook them from my mom, who learned from her mom. I agree with Tommy2dogs on how to fix, just flour & seasonings. Make sure you have a splatter screen handy, these suckers can really spit.
    #9
    Michael Hoffman
    Double-chop Porterhouse
    • Total Posts : 18259
    • Joined: 2000/07/01 08:52:00
    • Location: Gahanna, OH
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 01:14:55 (permalink)
    I hate to be the one who has tell you this, but on the Connecticut shore we always ate the eyes, and everything else. Now, I'll grant you I've only been eating them that way for a little over 65 years, but, hey, I can't help it if my family made me wait till I was 5 before permitting me to partake of soft shell crab sandwiches. At least I didn't have to wait till I was 12, as I did with lobsters, including the ones I caught in my traps.
    #10
    BT
    Filet Mignon
    • Total Posts : 3589
    • Joined: 2004/07/03 13:19:00
    • Location: San Francisco, CA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 02:26:33 (permalink)
    Can't recall my mom trimming them, but it's possible. Truth is, I was always a little squeamish about the eating of crabs, especially the hard crabs that go into the hot water still putting their all into the effort to grab you with their pincers.
    #11
    RC51Mike
    Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 443
    • Joined: 2003/03/10 13:00:00
    • Location: Wilmington, DE
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 07:43:41 (permalink)
    Every place I've ever eaten one on the Eastern Shore, where the crab was invented, removes the face and gills. Dredge 'em in flour then saute or deep fry.
    #12
    dreamzpainter
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 1609
    • Joined: 2005/02/06 12:44:00
    • Location: jacksonville, FL
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 09:55:47 (permalink)
    crabs grow by shedding their shell, usually around the full moon, for the next day or so the entire shell is soft and edible, then comes a tinback stage where its between hard and soft. As a kid growing up on the Barnaget Bay I spent summers with a drag/seine net catching crabs for dinner and to sell to "summer people", the diamond in the net was a "softee", these mom would freeze until there was enough for a meal. I spent many a morning in the shallows around the marsh islands and Island Beach State Park with a flashlight and dipnet searching for this elusive delicacy. They are difficult to locate at the best of times, hence the higher price charged by fishmongers. We always cut out the eyes and mandibles, lifted the shell sides and removed the deadmen(gills)lightly covered in flour and pan fried in butter, served on a kaiser roll (round hard roll)with lettuce, tomato and mayo/ketchup/relish sauce
    #13
    mammascookin
    Hamburger
    • Total Posts : 85
    • Joined: 2005/07/12 13:24:00
    • Location: des moines, IA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 10:01:20 (permalink)
    Ok, here is my next question...what is the difference between the hotel, prime, jumbo, and whale? I have seen this now on every site I have checked out (thanks to you guys for the sites!) and I understand the difference in size but is there a difference in taste etc? Which size is best???
    #14
    BT
    Filet Mignon
    • Total Posts : 3589
    • Joined: 2004/07/03 13:19:00
    • Location: San Francisco, CA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 11:34:00 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by RC51Mike

    crab was invented


    Invented? I'm, thinking mad scientist here . . . .
    #15
    seafarer john
    Filet Mignon
    • Total Posts : 3481
    • Joined: 2003/03/24 18:58:00
    • Location: New Paltz, NY
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 12:45:22 (permalink)
    One day, in Chincoteague we noted an elderly man intently watching a series of shallow trays full of salt water and crabs. When we approached him he explained that he ws watching for the crabs to molt, so we stood around watching and talking to the very frendly guy. Every now and then he would , using a scoop, fish out a softshell crab and carefully deposit it a box full of seaweed. He said these crabs were going directly to a large restaurant nearby (perhaps the Landmark- a place not on my list of the best) . and he explained to us the important difference between "softshell" and "leathershell". The true softshell literally has no shell at all - it is not given time to grow one - it goes from the crabman to the pot to the eater before it has time to harden into any semblance of a shell. The leather shell, which is the.only kind, besides hardshell, we see up here in the Hudson Valley, is a onetime softshell that has been a couple of days in transit and is starting to develop a leathery shell. It is still good eating, but not to be compared to the true softshell.

    On that day, we watched the box of crans being delivered to the kitchen and we marched ourselves into the restaurant and my wife feasted on genuine softshells - As i remember , I had the steamed oysters- I don't really care for the fried softshells. And, yes, the face and gills were removed before cooking.

    Cheers, John
    #16
    BT
    Filet Mignon
    • Total Posts : 3589
    • Joined: 2004/07/03 13:19:00
    • Location: San Francisco, CA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 13:41:36 (permalink)
    Seafarer, that might have been my Uncle Stan except he would have been doing that in Easton, MD. That's how he made a living--selling softshells. He lived on a tidewater creek in a small house he built himself and tended a pen of crabs waiting for them to molt.
    #17
    Diner-Lover
    Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 246
    • Joined: 2005/07/23 16:17:00
    • Location: Philly Burb, PA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 14:07:48 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by mammascookin

    Ok, here is my next question...what is the difference between the hotel, prime, jumbo, and whale? I have seen this now on every site I have checked out (thanks to you guys for the sites!) and I understand the difference in size but is there a difference in taste etc? Which size is best???

    I went back to the site I linked and couldn't find any answers. Like you, I just assume they're referring to the different sizes (and costs) of crabs. I wonder if the smaller ones are more tender and the larger more tough?

    I see that there's a toll-free phone number on their site where someone from Linton's could answer your questions, unless a Roadfood expert could tell you sooner.
    #18
    Michael Hoffman
    Double-chop Porterhouse
    • Total Posts : 18259
    • Joined: 2000/07/01 08:52:00
    • Location: Gahanna, OH
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 14:29:45 (permalink)
    Soft-shells are marketed by size with the largest commanding premium prices. They are measured across the back, point-to-point.

    Mediums - 3 1/2 to 4 inches
    Jumbos - 5 to 5 1/2 inches
    Hotels - 4 to 4 1/2 inches
    Whales - over 5 1/2 inches
    Primes - 4 1/2 to 5 inches
    #19
    mammascookin
    Hamburger
    • Total Posts : 85
    • Joined: 2005/07/12 13:24:00
    • Location: des moines, IA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 14:33:38 (permalink)
    I get the size differences...is there a difference though in quality between the sizes. Is one tougher than the other like Diner-Lover mentioned. I guess that is the question I was really trying to ask...
    #20
    mammascookin
    Hamburger
    • Total Posts : 85
    • Joined: 2005/07/12 13:24:00
    • Location: des moines, IA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 14:35:08 (permalink)
    Better yet, what would you buy? What size, live or dead, etc etc. Grandma deserves the best and the best is what I will get for her. Thanks!!!
    #21
    Michael Hoffman
    Double-chop Porterhouse
    • Total Posts : 18259
    • Joined: 2000/07/01 08:52:00
    • Location: Gahanna, OH
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 14:41:09 (permalink)
    I always liked them around five inches across. And always live.
    #22
    seafarer john
    Filet Mignon
    • Total Posts : 3481
    • Joined: 2003/03/24 18:58:00
    • Location: New Paltz, NY
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 17:32:09 (permalink)
    Size, in my limited experience, has nothing to do with "tenderness" in shellfish and crustaceans. A four pound lobster is better than a one pounder because you get more meat for you buck and it is every bit as sweet and tender as a smaller lobster. I believe the same is true of crabs. A possible exception to the rule might be clams - some of the big ones are really tough and must be chopped up to be edible.

    Cheers, John
    #23
    BT
    Filet Mignon
    • Total Posts : 3589
    • Joined: 2004/07/03 13:19:00
    • Location: San Francisco, CA
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 17:40:38 (permalink)
    I'm with Seafarer. If cost is no object, get larger. But with the depletion of coastal seafood stocks these days, you often pay a lot more for the larger sizes and in softshell crabs I wouldn't think it would be worth it. Do you really care (or think mom will) between 4" and 5"?
    #24
    Tommy2dogs
    Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 348
    • Joined: 2004/07/13 08:49:00
    • Location: Chicago, IL
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 20:11:07 (permalink)
    " I hate to be the one who has tell you this, but on the Connecticut shore we always ate the eyes, and everything else"

    Always wondered about those Connecticut Shore folks, This explains it!
    #25
    Michael Hoffman
    Double-chop Porterhouse
    • Total Posts : 18259
    • Joined: 2000/07/01 08:52:00
    • Location: Gahanna, OH
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/11 20:37:51 (permalink)
    It also helps explain why the British never tried to get back on the Connecticut shore after being driven off the first two times. We ate their eyes and everything else.
    #26
    GordonW
    Double Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 924
    • Joined: 2003/11/13 13:09:00
    • Location: Chapel Hill, NC
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/12 02:23:51 (permalink)
    I'm not trolling or inciting to riot or trying to create civil havoc. But....

    I grew up on the Atlantic shore, from New Jersey to North Carolina, and have eaten just about anything that ever came out or the water. And a question I could never figure out is why anyone would want to eat a softshelled crab the way it is eaten?

    They all come from crab pounds -- crabs in pens, with the pen tenders waiting for the crabs to shed -- and are not naturally captured creatures. And are great fish bait. But, they are, IMHO -- and charge back with YHO if you like, that's why we are here -- greasy, soggy, very expensive pieces of seafood. What is the purpose and lore of the deep-fried softshelled crab....?

    Moreover: Why, in a hardshell crab, are the eyes and lungs and guts tossed out, but in a softshelled crab, eaten with gusto?

    Guess I just not a softshelled crab fan.
    #27
    mek
    Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 123
    • Joined: 2003/04/10 09:49:00
    • Location: Baltimore, MD
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/12 09:20:10 (permalink)
    Good Morning!

    1. We have always cut off the face.
    2. We have always removed the lungs.
    3. We have always coated them,lightly, in flour and Old Bay.
    4. We have always sauteed them.

    Born and Raised in Maryland


    #28
    seafarer john
    Filet Mignon
    • Total Posts : 3481
    • Joined: 2003/03/24 18:58:00
    • Location: New Paltz, NY
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/12 09:57:36 (permalink)
    A whole lot of those softshells would be killed and eaten by their fellow hardshells if we didn't rescue them to a higher calling and better fate. I say this even though sauteed softshells are not on my list of favorite dishes.

    My friend Michael Hoffman seems to be a minority of one eating the eyes and lungs of the softshells or is it that his memory is failing him ?

    Cheers, John
    #29
    Pigiron
    Double Chili Cheeseburger
    • Total Posts : 1384
    • Joined: 2005/05/11 17:51:00
    • Location: Bergen County, NJ
    • Status: offline
    RE: Soft Shelled Crab 2005/08/12 10:29:11 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by GordonW

    What is the purpose and lore of the deep-fried softshelled crab....?

    Moreover: Why, in a hardshell crab, are the eyes and lungs and guts tossed out, but in a softshelled crab, eaten with gusto?



    The purpose and lore is the fact that they are absolutely delicious. No, they're not for everyone, but what is?

    The eyes and lungs are not generally eaten with gusto. Some folks bread and eat them whole, but by far, the most common method is to trim off the gill area, which includes the eyes. My fish monger does this automatically.

    My favorite preparation of soft-shelled crab is the Japanese spider roll.
    #30
    Page: 12 > Showing page 1 of 2
    Jump to:
    © 2014 APG vNext Commercial Version 5.1