Crab salad

One of my Dad’s signature dishes is  his Portuguese style Crab Salad. This dish had many rave reviews from our  visitors and friends. It’s a dish that is light, full of flavours, addicting and a real treat. I remember on Saturdays, my dad would go to the Portuguese fish market downtown Toronto, buy 1 or 2 crabs, live ones, and it would be a feast for the eyes and mouth. Here’s the recipe enjoy !  Oh, I almost forgot, a nice wine to go with it would be a smooth  white chardonnay such as Allianca a light inexpensive Portuguese vino verde (green/white wine) or  Little Penguin of  South Australia !  Try it !

Ingredients: Yield 4 persons

King Crab (about 3-4  lbs) (or 2 small sized)

Deep pot of water

The Dressing:

garlic cloves 3 or 4
Red Pimento sauce (mild)
pinch of cumin spice
Olive oil
sea salt
white or red wine vinegar
Black Pepper
squeeze of lemon
4 boiled eggs (optional)

1. First you would boil the water in the pot, try to fill it about 3/4 of the pot.
2. After it’s been boiling for about 15 minutes or so, grab the live crab from the back, usually
the claws are tied by a rubber band. You can cut the band  after it’s boiled. Let it boil for about 5 to 7 minutes. The crab would have changed to a pinky orange colour.
3) Remove crabs from the Pot, let it sit on a tray to cool down, about 10 to 15 minutes. b) At this point you could boil the 4 eggs, for about 5 minutes. They need to be hard-boiled. Set to the side for decorating the salad.
4) Making the dressing; pour about 3/4 cup of olive oil, about 1/2 cup of red or white vinegar, chopped parsley about 1/2 cup, add 1 tablespoon of red pimento sauce (mild) or  1 tsp. of hot pimento sauce to the mild sauce if you prefer, chop the 3 cloves of garlic in small bits, add the 1 tsp of pepper, and a pinch of sea salt.
5) Mix all wet ingredients, and put to the side.
6) Begin cracking the crab legs for ease of eating. In addition, the main body of the crab, use a steak knife by puncturing the opening of  the front facial part of the crab and crack in half. You may need to clear out some of the guts, and brake the body into 4 or 5 parts for eating. You can save part of the crab juice and add it to the dressing if you wish. It  reinforce the overall crab flavour.
7)Gather all your crab pieces on a rectangular casserole dish Add your boiled eggs sliced in halves, drop some pimento red pepper sauce sparingly over the whole dish and eggs.
8)Pour the dressing over the entire crab, making sure all pieces has some dressing.
9)Squeeze some lemon over the entire dish and add some parsley for decoration, and there you go a really tasty Crab salad great for anytime of the year. Nice sides are Portuguese corn bread or popsecos (Portuguese buns).

Bom Appetit !

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3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Eddy
    Dec 02, 2009 @ 18:18:18

    This dish looks so good I can almost smell it/taste it.



    • portuguesecook
      Dec 02, 2009 @ 20:20:47

      Only that I forgot the Portuguese bread, which will be my next post. Making Portuguese style corn bread, the perfect companion to this
      tasty meal.

      Mannie Dasilva-Digiovanni
      Portuguese Cook


  2. elversodeluniverso
    Dec 06, 2009 @ 01:47:03



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