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Crab Feast

May 28, 2013

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CrabFeast-7

This past weekend we had a crab feast at our house. We’ve always talked about ordering Maryland crabs to steam, but never thought of it in time to order for the right occasion. Well, this time we finally got it right, because a crab feast is a great way to celebrate Memorial Day. We ordered live Maryland blue crabs and they made it all the way to California safe and sound. And very much alive!

The menu was pretty simple–lots of steamed crab and shrimp, corn on the cob, hush puppies and homemade ice cream for dessert.

Here’s how we steamed our crabs (and shrimp):

We ordered 2½ dozen crabs and picked up 2 pounds of peel-and-eat shrimp which was perfect for 4 adults.

We used this stockpot and steamer basket (24 qt) along with this propane base. Everyone will need their own sharp paring knife and a mallet. And lots of paper towels–crab picking is a messy job!

Fill the bottom of the steamer pot with equal parts of beer and water. You don’t want the crabs sitting in the water, so fill it just under where the basket falls. Bring it to a boil. Gently place the crabs in the basket, sprinkling Old Bay on each layer. (We probably cooked about 10-12 crabs at a time.) Steam the crabs for about 30 minutes. The cook time depends on the size of your crabs and how many you are steaming at a time, you might have to adjust.  We also added peel-and-eat-shrimp and corn on the cob for about the last 10 minutes of steaming. To serve, simply dump the basket contents directly on your table (covered in brown paper or newspaper). Serve with Old Bay and cocktail sauce.

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