Recipes

Gulf Coast Crab Toast

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By Chef Irv Miller
Serves 4-6

Gulf Coast Blue Crab is known all over the world for its sweet flavor and tender meat. The commercial crab season occurs year-round, and crab pickers from coast to coast hand-pick and sort wild harvested hard shell blue crabs for all grades of crab. My favorite is backfin or jumbo lump crab. Along the Gulf coast states, from Florida to Louisiana, commercially-caught crabs are often lightly salted for boiling before the crabmeat is removed by hand for packing, shipping or retailing.

Often, recreational crabbers and regional seafood cooks alike, boil their live crabs with a mesh bag of Zatarainís Crab Boil at home and in restaurants all along the Gulf region. The robust spice bag concoction contains mustard seed, whole coriander seeds, allspice, bay leaf, and pepper: a testament to the Louisiana region.

Here in the Florida Panhandle region I enjoy making this decadent chilled crab salad recipe to spoon onto toast rounds. It is especially delicious with Gulf coast blue crab provided by regional pickers from the Florida to Louisiana coastline.

(Serves 4-6)

Ingredients

  1. 1 small French Baguette for toasted rounds
  2. Extra virgin olive oil for brushing
  3. 5 tablespoons mayonnaise (Dukes brand preferred)
  4. 2 tablespoon Creole mustard (Zatarainís preferred)
  5. 1-2 tablespoon lemon juice
  6. Generous dashes hot sauce (Edís Red brand preferred)
  7. 4 tablespoons finely chopped celery, reserve whole leaves
  8. 5 tablespoon finely chopped green onions (whites and greens)
  9. 1/4 teaspoon seafood seasoning (Old Bay Seasoning preferred)
  10. Ĺ teaspoon fine micro plane zest of lemon
  11. 2 cups Gulf Coast blue crab backfin
  12. 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped parsley
  13. Dash freshly ground black pepper

Method

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

For the toast rounds: Preheat oven to 350F. Slice the French baguette into 1/4-inch rounds. Arrange slices on a baking pan and brush lightly with olive oil. Toast until just light brown, about 5 to 7 minutes. Turn and brush the other side lightly with olive oil, toast again until golden and set aside.

For the crab toast: Remove and discard any cartilage from the backfin. Set crabmeat aside. In a small mixing bowl whisk together mayonnaise, Creole mustard, lemon juice, hot sauce, celery, green onions, seafood seasoning and lemon zest. Gently fold in lumps of fresh crab. Season the dip with ground black pepper. Spoon onto toasted French bread rounds lined with celery leaves. Sprinkle over chopped parsley and serve.

Recipe compliments of Jackson's Steakhouse, Pensacola, Florida
www.JacksonsSteakhouse.com

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