Crab Legs with Dipping Sauces
Don’t let crab legs intimidate you, they’re very easy to prepare. Frozen crab legs are pre-cooked and essentially just need to be reheated in the oven or boiled. Depending on the size and type of crab legs, adjust the cooking time as necessary. Plan for about 1 to 1-1/2 pounds of frozen pre-cooked crab legs to serve 2.
Bake: Preheat oven to 350°F. In a large baking dish or pan, add 3 minced garlic cloves, 1 sliced lemon, several parsley sprigs and 1 bay leaf. Add the crab legs and pour 3 cups beer or water over the legs. Bake 10 minutes or until heated through.
Boil: Heat a large, covered saucepot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Submerge the crab legs in the water, cover and cook 5 minutes or until heated through.
Transfer the hot crab legs to a large bowl, cover with a clean dish towel to keep warm and serve.
Removing crabmeat from the shells can be a bit tricky. Breaking the crab legs at the joints loosens crabmeat free from the cartilage, helping to remove the meat in whole pieces. Follow these simple steps to enjoy every last morsel.
1. Break crab legs apart at their joints.
2. Use scissors to cut through the shells lengthwise to expose the crabmeat.
3. Extract the crabmeat from the shells with a seafood fork.
Enjoy the succulent crabmeat dipped in Clarified Butter, Warm Dill Mayo or Lemon-Butter Sauce (recipes follow). Use crabmeat in soup, chowder or gumbo; to create appetizers such as dips, crab cakes or spring rolls; tossed into pasta or risotto.
Crabmeat is also delicious served chilled. Simply thaw crab legs in the refrigerator overnight, or place the unopened plastic bag in a large bowl of cold water for about 30 minutes or until the crabmeat is thawed. Use to make crab salad, top a cobb salad, or in sushi; serve in a martini glass with lettuce, chopped celery and cocktail sauce.
In small saucepot, heat 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks), cut into small pieces, over low heat 2 minutes or until melted. (Or, heat butter in small microwave-safe bowl in microwave oven on high 1-1/2 minutes or until melted.) With large spoon, skim off and discard foam from top of melted butter. Makes about 1 cup.
Warm Dill Mayo
Active Time: 5 minutes • Total Time: 7 minutes • Serves: 8
1 cup Schnucks real mayonnaise
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon Schnucks granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
In small saucepot, heat mayonnaise over low heat 2 minutes or until warm, whisking constantly; do not let mayonnaise boil. Stir in dill, lemon juice, sugar, Worcestershire, salt and pepper; remove from heat and transfer to serving bowl. Makes about 1 cup.
Each serving (about 2 tablespoons): about 190 calories, 21 g total fat (3 g saturated), 12 mg cholesterol, 324 mg sodium, 1 g carbohydrates, 0 g fiber, 1 g sugars, 0 g protein
Active Time: 15 minutes • Total Time: 15 minutes • Serves: 8
4 garlic cloves
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks), cut into small pieces
In blender, purée garlic, lemon juice, thyme, salt and pepper 1 minute or until well combined, occasionally scraping sides of blender with rubber spatula.
In small microwave-safe bowl, heat butter in microwave oven on high 1-1/2 minutes or until melted. With blender running, slowly pour in melted butter and purée 30 seconds or until mixture is smooth; transfer to serving bowl. Makes about 1 cup.
Each serving (about 2 tablespoons): about 208 calories, 23 g total fat (14 g saturated), 61 mg cholesterol, 149 mg sodium, 1 g carbohydrates, 0 g fiber, 0 g sugars, 0 g protein
Sauce can be prepared and refrigerated up to 1 day in advance. Reheat in microwave oven before serving.