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Nov 30, 2004 10:17 AM

Thanks gordon wing--I didn't toss the 'crab shmoo'

  • c

Thanks for your idea, which I adapted for dinner last night. We had some 'shmoo' which we saved from our steamed Dungeness the night before.

I mixed the reserved shmoo (about 1/3 c. of only the really smooth stuff) with 4 eggs, very thinly-sliced rehydrated shitakes, chopped chives, pinch S&P, tiny drizzle of soy and sesame oil. Poured custard into 3 greased ramekins, covered each w/ foil, and placed in steamer on low heat til set, about 10-15 min.

Prepared hubby to order pizza or something if this tanked, but no worries--it turned out beautifully. It was pillowy and soft, but slightly gooey right at the core. Was worried that the shmoo would be too fishy, but flavors balanced well. Served it w/ a side salad using slivers of the bitter radicchio that I posted about below. Thanks again for the great idea and helping me to not waste the golden treasure.

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  1. I got hungry reading your glad that you took the opportunity to give it a try. the crab "schmoo" is too good to waste.

    1 Reply
    1. re: gordon wing

      Yes, using the shmoo the next day was a great way to extend our love affair w/ the sweet crab. Great way to finish off the wine that we had w/ it the night before, too.

      BTW, I forgot to mention that I added whole milk to thin out the custard as well. Thanks again.

    2. I like the sound of this! what else besides 'crab schmoo' do you think would be good like this?

      And what makes custard 'custard', rather than just steamed eggs?

      1 Reply
      1. re: kate

        Hmmm...I automatically used the word "custard" b/c I added about 1/2 c. milk (which I forgot to mention in my OP) to thin out the egg mixture. It had the runny consistency of creme brulee before it's cooked and set. End product was dif. than steamed eggs IMO--texture was firmer than a souffle but lighter than an omelette.

        I actually merged gw's idea w/ a simple dish my mom used to make--a mixture of eggs, ground pork, scallions, wood ear mushrooms, and Asian seasonings (like fish sauce, sesame oil) cooked in a bain marie (water bath) in the oven. I didn't care for this much as a kid, but can appreciate it more now.

        I suppose you could sub ground pork, lump crab, or orange fish roe for the schmoo, but it has such a unique texture and essence that there's no parallel substitution that comes to mind. Would be great to hear others' ideas. I'm wondering how it would taste w/ schmoo and a dollop of fish roe on top next time...

      2. I too enjoy "crab butter", however in the early 90s, there was a domoic acid problem with crabs from Washington state. Caused a big problem with crab processors. The government and the processors decided the only way to sell those crab, was to cook them and part them, and sell only legs with part of the "body" attached. No "shmoo" allowed.

        Since then, domoic acid has been found off "our" coast, for several years mussels have been quarantined due to domoic acid. A few years ago, Santa Cruz had a marine mammal die off due to domoic acid.

        For you "crab butter" fans, please google "domoic acid"

        2 Replies
        1. re: Alan408

          "A few years ago, Santa Cruz had a marine mammal die off due to domoic acid"

          Whilst everyone should be aware of the risks of food poisoning, red tide, etc. when eating seafood, the above quote made me smile. Surely it is more relevant to talk about this in terms of the statistics and side effects of HUMAN food poisoning, rather than some nameless 'marine mammal' that died "a few years ago"?

          1. re: kate

            Oh, but you don't live in Santa Cruz, my dear (like I do). The folks here are generally very conscious of the forests and oceans and their inhabitants and seem to get press for such matters. Just b/c we humans are higher up on the food chain doesn't mean we shouldn't care...

            That being said, it's a bit ironic, since I'm the one who raved about using the crab schmoo and probably rank high as a meat/fish consumer in this town. But the latest seafood watch list that I consulted says that eating Dungeness is just fine, so I'm not feeling too guilty :)