Maryland Soft Shell Crab
Presented by A Ca Mia Italian Restaurant
- 4 large Maryland soft shell crabs
- 1 cup flour
- 5 eggs, beaten
- 1 cup dry bread crumbs
- 2 T minced fresh herbs (dill, oregano, sage, tarragon, rosemary)
- 1/4 cup + 2 T vegetable oil, divided
- 1/4 red onion, chopped
- 2 portobello mushrooms, sliced
- 2 cups sliced white mushrooms
- 1/4 cup Marsala
- 1/4 cup beef stock
- 1 T green peppercorns
- 1 T tomato paste
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 2 T butter
- Salt to taste
- 2 cups spinach
Set up a breading station for the crabs: Place flour in a large bowl, eggs in a bowl next to it, and a bowl with breadcrumbs mixed with herbs at the end. Dredge each crab in flour, dip in beaten eggs, and roll in seasoned breadcrumbs.
In an ovenproof sauté pan, heat about 1/4 cup oil on high heat. When oil is hot, place crabs in the pan. Turning over once, cook until golden brown on each side. Remove from heat, drain oil from pan, and set aside.
In a separate sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons of oil. Add onions and mushrooms and cook until golden, stirring occasionally. When caramelized, deglaze pan with Marsala then stir in beef stock and green peppercorns. Simmer until reduced by half. Add tomato paste then stir in heavy cream. Reduce until sauce coats the back of a spoon.
Add butter to pan with the crabs and season with salt. Place in an oven preheated to 350ºF oven for 7 minutes.
To finish, divide spinach between two plates and stack 2 crabs on top of each. Spoon sauce over the crabs to taste and serve at once.