5 Ways to Cook Crab Legs to Perfection
Crab boils are always a great option for family gatherings and dinners. While extracting the meat out of crab legs can be tiring, as soon as those meaty pieces mix with melted butter and delicious seafood spices, every worry just fades away, as you dive into the world of yummy food.
However, one doesn’t always crave crab boil and would rather prefer some other crab dish for dinner. This is where crab legs come into play. They are easy to make, a wonderful idea for dinner, and absolutely delicious seafood. There is not a single way to cook crab. Many seafood experts offer their own way of cooking them. Therefore, whichever recipe you follow there is a good chance that you will end up with a great crab dish.
To help you out with your seafood dinner worries we have 5 ways in which you can cook the perfect crab legs for dinner. Our top 5 ways are an inspiration from the expert cooks at Red Crab Juicy Seafood. These master chefs have picked their favorite way to cook this crustacean and have helped us guide you to replicate them at home. So why wait? Let’s get learning!
5 Ways to Cook Crab Legs
What comes to your mind when you think about crab legs? Fancy dinning? Champagne? Overdressed waitstaff? Shiny silverware? Or an absolutely elaborate and beautiful ambiance? We bet that you would think of all that. Why? Because crab legs are often associated with fancy dining and high-end restaurants. But why limit the beautiful dish to that?
Once you learn how to cook crab legs to perfection you will stop waiting on fancy restaurants to serve you this exquisite cuisine. You can simply make it at home and enjoy it with your family as a cozy homemade dinner.
While there are many ways in which you can cook crab and you are only limited by your imagination; there are a few tips and tricks that you have to keep in mind when dealing with this little critter. In this article, we will stick to the basic ways that you can master and work your way up. Here are a few of the simplest ways you can cook crab legs at home, coming exclusively from the kitchen of Red Crab Juicy Seafood.
Steamed Crab Legs
One of the simplest ways to cook crab is by steaming it. In a large stockpot add water, a sliced lemon, some seafood seasoning, and ground black pepper. Bring the water to a boil. Once the water is boiling, put the crab in a steam basket and place it over the pot. Cover it and let it cook for 5 to 6 minutes. Once done serve the crab legs with your favorite butter sauce.
Boiled Crab Legs
Boiling is the most popular cooking technique for all crab varieties. It is the easiest method and preserves the most flavor. To do so, put a large pot of water to boil. Add lots of salt to it. Yes, lots of salt. It should be enough that when you taste it, it tastes like seawater. You can keep it like this or add white wine, beer, or homemade seasoning to the water too. This depends on you. Once the water boils add crab to it.
When adding crab to the pot, make sure that you add it all at once and not in portions. Keep the pot on high flame and continue to boil till the crab legs start floating. This should happen in about 10 minutes. Once the legs are afloat, remove them from the pot with the help of a pair of tongs and let them sit till they have cooled down. Once cool it’s time to start cracking!
Baked Crab Legs
Baking crab legs helps you sidestep the issue of waterlogged crab and the loss of flavor and juices. To bake, you would have to pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. If you are using frozen crab, thaw it beforehand. If you are using live crab, boil it till they are dead. Precooking crab legs should take you about 30 seconds to a few minutes. This depends on their size.
Place the crab legs separately in a baking dish. Pour a little water at the bottom of the dish. If you like you can also replace water with white wine or fish stock. Sprinkle the seasoning of your choice on the legs and cover the dish with aluminum foil. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes till your dish is ready to serve.
Grilled Crab Legs
Nothing says summertime and a family outing like grilling and when it comes to grilling crab legs, there is nothing that adds such a fire-rich flavor to them. However, this method requires more work than any other method. To start off you will have to steam or boil crab legs until they are half-cooked.
It’s noteworthy that this method is just restricted to hard-shell crabs. If you are grilling soft shell crab, then that is a whole different ballgame and one that is much more difficult. So, let’s stick to the simple ones.
For grilling, boil the legs beforehand following the method mentioned above. But remove them after 5 minutes of cooking as they will be half done. Let them cool and clean them. Next, toss them into a bowl with olive oil, thyme, rosemary, and the seasonings of your choice. Set the grill and place the oiled crab legs on the hot grill to cook. Keep grilling till they have turned brown and have cooked through. The cooking time will be approximately 4 minutes per side.
Cracked Crab Legs
To serve cracked crab legs you will have to boil or steam the crab legs beforehand. Once they are cooked through, with the help of tools you can crack the shell open. If you do not want to use tools, then you can simply cut open the shell with a pair of kitchen shears. To do so, take the legs and pinch them slightly between your fingers. From the space that creates cut down the shell of the leg lengthwise. Then, just simply open the shell sideways to expose the meat. Extract the meat with your fingers. Be gentle when doing it so that you do not squish the meat.
If you are cooking snow crab, then you would not have to cut the shell. To crack it you have to simply snap the legs with the force of your fingers. Bend the them till the shell snaps and the meat slides out. Serve your cracked crab meat with warm melted butter and enjoy!