Alaskan King Crab 3 Ways (Euro-Asian Style)

Follow Me Foodie’s Sunday Night Dinner Series

Follow Me Foodie to Alaskan King Crab 3 Ways (Euro-Asian Style)

50 lbs. 50 pounds of Alaskan King Crab. What the heck? And no it wasn’t all for me, although I probably ate at least 5lbs of it. This 50lbs was for 15 people. Let me put this into perspective for those who are unfamiliar. A 10lbs Alaskan King Crab will usually feed about 8-10 people at a Chinese restaurant with an additional 5-6 dishes. So 50lbs is a crap load of crab.

I introduced the Follow Me Foodieโ€™s Sunday Night Dinner Series last week with Lamb 5 Ways & Momofuku Milk Bar Cakes, and this week is about seafood. I hope you find it inspiring for your own recipes or dinner parties. Itโ€™s a behind the scenes look at what happens when Iโ€™m not eating out at a restaurant. There is the chefโ€™s way and then there is the foodie way and everything you see is made by passionate foodies with no formal training.

I knew it was coming and I was waiting for the day. I usually indulge in my Alaskan King Crab at Chinese restaurants, and I know you can make it at home, but it’s not something you want to mess up. As I mentioned in my previous post “Alaskan King Crab Dinners“, it’s an expensive ingredient and it’s not something you want to really experiment with. You also need the right tools and a good pair of gloves because deconstructing the crab is a challenge.

These beauties were bought fresh from the dock right from the crab (not crack) dealer. I can’t tell you where or how because it sounded a bit shady, but it was legal. I just limited my questions.

When you see this dinner you might think it was prepared by Chinese people or at least Asian people, but it actually wasn’t. These friends were Portuguese and non-Asians. I introduced a couple of them to their first Chinese Alaskan King Crab dinner last year and now flash forward and they’re making it as good as the Chinese restaurants now. They followed the concept, but changed some of the ingredients, seasoning and flavours. I guess it was Chinese-Portuguese Alaskan King Crab in which case I’ll call “Macau-style”…. ha! No I’ll call it “Euro-Asian” style Alaskan King Crab.

On the table:

Appetizers

Tempura Shrimp – It was just regular tempura shrimp, but it was interesting to see 1/8 of the people eating the whole thing including the legs and tails and then the others ripping them off. I was team legs and tails…

Welcome to Extreme Make Over Follow Me foodie Edition: Alaskan King Crab

Alaskan King Crab Legs (Before)

Again, you need a good pair of kitchen shears or scissors to get through these guys. Make sure you’re using a good pair of gloves too because the spikes are sharp enough to puncture skin if you’re not careful. A good idea is to cut down the legs before cooking them so it’s easier to eat and open later.

Alaskan King Crab Legs Style 1 (After)

Steamed Alaskan King Crab Legs with Garlic – To see the authentic Chinese style see here.

The steamed crab legs were enjoyed with a few dipping sauces: Korean Gochujang (Korean chili bean paste), Green Goddess Dressing (made with mayo, sour cream, chives and herbs), and then the last one I don’t remember but it was almost like a garlic butter with mustard and it reminded me of a potato or egg salad dressing.

Alaskan King Crab Legs Style 2 (After)

Steamed Alaskan King Crab Legs Portuguese Style – The sauce was made from onions, garlic, tomato paste, green onions, good olive oil, maybe a splash of white wine and salt and pepper. Quite often it will also include thinly sliced kale. This sauce goes great with any seafood and you can try it with octopus too or make it into a stew with added tomatoes and stock.

Alaskan King Crab Knuckles (Before)

Alaskan King Crab Knuckles (After)

Deep Fried Alaskan King Crab Knuckles – I think this was a basic flour and rice flour tempura batter, but you can experiment with the type of flour. I would also suggest using peanut oil for the frying process because it has a high smoking temperature and it has a better flavour. Sprinkle the seasoning last minute. The seasoning on this was amazing with lots of garlic powder, white pepper, salt and other spices. The classic Chinese style would use fried garlic, fried chillies, white pepper, salt and perhaps some 5 spice powder – see here. I would experiment one by one because you don’t want to do it for the whole batch and mess it up.

Alaskan King Crab Tomalley (Before)

Don’t waste the crab juice, guts and brains also known as tomalley or “money” .

Remove all the crab shells and use it to make a seafood stock. Keep the pure juice for this…

Alaskan King Crab Tomalley (After)

Alaskan King Crab Tomalley Sauce – There’s a lot of butter in this and it’s basically a bechamel with added crab tomalley and reduced. Start off with equal parts flour and butter (or even 1/2 butter 1/2 tomalley juice) and cook it until the flour taste is cooked out. Next slowly add the cream until it thickens. From there just pour in the crab juice/tomalley in a little at a time until it gradually comes together. You can add some curry powder, cheese, mustard, nutmeg or whatever you wish because in the end it gets poured all over this…

Alaskan King Crab Head (Before)

Make sure you clean out the heads and keep the tomalley for the sauce. These shells should be cleaned because they’re going to be used as the serving dish.

Alaskan King Crab Head (After)

Baked Alaskan King Crab Head with Tomalley Cream Sauce – The Chinese version might have a layer of baked cheese on top – see here and here. The fried rice for this was an Euro-Asian style fried rice instead of a Chinese version. The Chinese version might have pieces of King Crab meat in it, but in this case they just used pieces of Chinese roasted suckling pig.

Using tomalley to make a cream sauce is pretty much the same as using butter. To be honest I would even use less butter for the roux because the tomalley is already so rich.

Of course we need our vegetables, so here comes the potatoes…

Sauteed Pea Shoots and Garlic

Roasted asparagus, bacon, deep fried kale and garlic (Sorry, I got this photo halfway through)

This was my plate… and then X 3… or 4?

There’s always room for dessert!

Momofuku Milk Bar’s Banana Cake, Momofuku Milk Bar’s Birthday Cake, Canadian Pie in a Jar with Buttercrunch Topping, and a Fruit Cake.

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