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Parmesan crusted Soft shell Crab Sandwiches


  • 2 c flour
  • 1 c Parmesan, grated
  • 1/2 ts salt
  • 1/4 ts pepper
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 ts Tabasco
  • 1 c mayonnaise
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • zest of 1 lemon, finely grated
  • 1/2 ts garlic, minced
  • 1/2 ts thyme
  • 1 T extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 c oil, for frying
  • 8 soft-shell crabs, cleaned
  • 8 rolls, hard, halved
  • 2 md tomatoes, thinly sliced
  • 2 bunches arugula, large stems removed


Yield: 8 servings. In a medium bowl, combine 1 cup of the flour with the Parmesan, salt and pepper. Make a well in the center and add the eggs and 1/4 cup of water. Beat the eggs and water together and gradually incorporate the flour mixture to form a smooth batter. Add 1/8 teaspoon of the Tabasco and set aside to rest for 30 minutes. In another bowl, combine the mayonnaise, lemon juice, lemon zest, garlic, thyme, olive oil and the remaining 1/8 teaspoon Tabasco. Whisk to blend and set aside for at least 30 minutes. (The recipe can be prepared to this point up to 1 day ahead. Refrigerate the batter and mayonnaise. If the batter becomes very thick, thin it out with a little water.) Preheat the oven to 250F. In a large skillet, heat the peanut oil over moderately high heat to 350F. Dredge the crabs in the remaining 1 cup flour and shake off the excess. Dip 4 of the crabs in the batter, let some of the batter drip off, and then fry them in the skillet, turning once, until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels, place on a heatproof platter and keep warm in the oven. Repeat with the 4 remaining crabs. Scoop out some of the bread from the center of the rolls to hollow them slightly. Spread 2 heaping teaspoons of the mayonnaise on each half. Assemble the sandwiches by placing 2 or 3 slices of tomato and 4 or 5 arugula leaves on the bottom half of each roll. Set the fried crabs on top and close the sandwiches. Serve immediately. Serves 8.

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