10# marginal stone crab claws?
Here's the deal: I ordered a bunch of seafood from a West Coast purveyor, including 10# of stone crab claws from Baja. Well, they're not remotely close to being as tasty as the Floridian stone crab claws I'm used to, and the texture's a little, I don't know, fibrous almost. In fact, my wife and son won't eat them plain, with drawn butter. (They're not rotten or anything, just different from what I was expecting.)
So, I need some ideas for what to do with them. Hell, I'll even pick the meat from each claw if necessary for a recipe. Any thoughts?
That's too bad - but a prime lesson in why true regional food is best. Stone crabs are from Florida. You wouldn't buy Alaskan salmon from where I live here in Georgia...
You're going to have a hard time making these things any better, even picked off the shells it's going to be kind of weird. You could try mixing up a batch of seafood stuffing and stuffing it into fish (like stuffed flounder) or using it as a topping for fish.
That's ashame. Could you use them in a dip? Artichoke crab dip, or in a fruit de mare pasta dish, add some shriimp and mussels, crab stuffed sole, crab fettucini alfredo.
This last summer I trapped loads of stone crabs here in the Puget Sound, and yep, stone crabs here are best used for stock and such. And they do make an absolutely delicious crab stock. :) I'm sure there are many kinds of stone crabs, after all.
So you might consider making stock from them and freezing it for use later? That's what I did, and am still enjoying the stock in recipes these days.
I just boiled up in water all the stone crab I had (I think there were about 10 crabs in pieces in there), didn't add anything to it at all. :) Boiled it for 2-3 hrs, then condensed it down until it was to the flavor I preferred. Nothing fancy, very easy, and delicious!
I use it for soups and sauces, mostly. The one specific recipe I've used it in where it worked especially well was a Creamy Scallop Lasagne. Here, I'll go get it and post it for you...
Here's the Creamy Scallop Lasagne I've used the crab stock in... delicious recipe! :) I just used it in place of the chicken broth, and I believe I didn't use any Vermouth this last time, either.
** Creamy Scallop Lasagna **
1 hour | 20 min prep
* 6 tablespoons butter, divided
* 1/2 lb mushroom, sliced
* 1/2 cup chopped green onion
* 1/4 cup minced shallot
* 3 cloves garlic, minced
* 1 1/2 lbs small scallops
* 1 teaspoon white pepper
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 12 lasagna noodles or spinach lasagna noodles
* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 1/4 cup flour
* 1 cup chicken broth, unsalted
* 1 cup heavy cream
* 1/3 cup dry white vermouth
* 1 teaspoon dried thyme
* 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
* 1/4 cup half-and-half
* 1 cup jarlsberg cheese, shredded
* 1 cup smoked gouda cheese, shredded
* 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large saute pan over medium-high heat.
3. Add the mushrooms and cook until golden, about 5 minutes.
4. Reduce heat to medium and add the green onions, shallots, and garlic, and saute for 3 minutes.
5. Transfer the mushroom mixture to a bowl and set aside.
6. Do not rinse out this pan- we're going to use it again in the upcoming steps.
7. Rinse the scallops under cold water, then pat dry with a paper towel and season with the white pepper.
8. Increase the pan heat to medium-high and, in the previously-used pan, melt another 1 tablespoon butter.
9. Saute the scallops until just opaque, about 2 to 3 minutes.
10. Be careful to not overcook.
11. Season with salt and transfer to a strainer set over a bowl to let it drain.
12. Reserve drained liquid.
13. Cook the lasagna noodles according to package directions.
14. Drain, rinse immediately with cold water and then drain again.
15. Toss with 1 Tbsp olive oil and set aside.
16. Now to start the sauce!
17. Over medium heat melt the remaining butter in a saucepan.
18. Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly to keep it from browning.
19. Gradually add the chicken broth, cream, and vermouth.
20. Cook, stirring occasionally, until smooth and thickened, about 5 minutes.
21. As soon as sauce begins to boil, remove it from the heat.
22. Season with thyme and basil.
23. Stir in 1/4 cup of the reserved strained scallop juice.
24. Lightly spray the bottom of a 9x13-inch baking pan with pan spray.
25. Pour the half-and-half into the bottom of the baking pan.
26. Lay 4 noodles in a single layer in the pan.
27. Layer with 1/3 each of the mushroom mixture, scallops, and shredded cheeses.
28. Then coat with 1/3 of the sauce.
29. Repeat the process twice, ending with the sauce.
30. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan.
31. Cover pan with foil and bake at 350F for 20 minutes, then remove foil and bake 20 minutes longer.
32. Remove from oven, cover, and let sit 15 minutes before serving.
33. Makes 6 servings.