It’s time for a dungeness crab feast!

by foodhoe on December 22, 2014

Dungeness Crab season is in full swing and we began it last month with a crab-centric feast that was so good we are going to do it again for Christmas.  Mr. K likes to drive out to Half Moon Bay to pickup live crab from the fishing boats docked at Pillar Point Harbor, which is about an hours drive from our place.  These crabs are so sweet and clean tasting because they are plucked straight out of the ocean


On the holidays you have to either reserve your crabs or else get there early.  Did you know there is a phone app for that?  One time Mr. K got there by 10 am and waited in line, but person after person picked up large orders (of up to 20 crabs), and sadly for us, the boat  ran out of their crabby inventory.


Here was our school of crabs.  They were feisty and got really active when we ran water over them.


A picture of one with Mr. K’s hand for scale, most are 3 pounds and above.  He grabs them with tongs from behind to avoid getting pinched.


He boils them for 11-12 minutes, less if we plan to roast them in the oven with butter and garlic.  It’s important to put them on ice after boiling to stop the cooking process, it makes such a difference in the texture.  Here they are all red and rosy after their hot tub bath…

a pile o'crab

I break off the top first to scoop out all of the the crab butter, then break the legs apart and crack them.  That is my cat Maki in the background, he is ready to grab a leg, but will clean up anything that drops onto the floor.

kitty wants crab

My family doesn’t like to crack the crabs, which means I have to crack the shells and pick all the meat out from them, which is very labor intensive.  This is three crabs worth, the rest of the crabs we roasted with garlic butter in the oven.


Everyone loves the garlic roasted crab, but I especially like them because everyone is willing to do a little work to crack open the shells to get to the tender meat inside and licking your garlic butter coated fingers is part of the fun


We made a fair rendition of the Garlic Butter noodles from Thanh Long, using the recipe from Rasa Malaysia’s excellent blog.

garlic noodles

And because you can never have enough garlic, I made garlic bread out of crusty ciabatta bread.  This is so easy to make and tastes so good, mince a few cloves of garlic and melt with a stick of butter.  Slice a loaf of bread, slather the garlic butter over the bread, wrap in foil and bake at 325 for half an hour or so.


My plate. It was such a feast, and it tasted even better!  Hope your holidays are the best ever!


{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Rowena December 23, 2014 at 2:03 am

Ooooh….I am so jealous! Love that photo with Maki…he has such a wistful look on his face!


foodhoe December 30, 2014 at 5:17 pm

Rowena, Maki is pretty well behaved for a former feral kitty kat!


Kirk December 24, 2014 at 8:05 am

Looks great! Happy Holidays!


grace December 28, 2014 at 4:19 am

i see him eying that crab…what a cutie. 🙂
don’t judge me harshly, but i’ve only ever eaten crab in the form of crab cake! :0


foodhoe December 30, 2014 at 5:18 pm

Grace, He really is a cutie… I haven’t ever tried making crabcakes, but was recently doing some research on recipes for them. Got a good one?


Shikha @ Shikha la mode December 29, 2014 at 3:13 pm

One of my favorite seasons of SF!


Brenda Ton January 9, 2015 at 6:23 pm

You crack all of your family’s crabs?! You heavenly angel. Man, this all looks so delicious. I love the recipe that you used. I used to make it all the time and we also added in the crab mustard to the noodles for a bit of a briny taste .


foodhoe January 12, 2015 at 4:29 pm

I threw in a bunch of the crab butter too, that adds a lot of rich flavor! Yes, I ended up cracking and cleaning the crabs partly because it kills me when I see all of the unpicked meat from the shells and my Dad really can’t do it at all himself. We are going to have this feast at our house with you all soon!


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