In this dish, fresh blue crabs are steamed in a flavorful mixture of chile, garlic, lime, and beer.
For the Dipping Sauce
- 4 tbsp. fish sauce
- 2 small red or green Thai chiles, stemmed and sliced into thin rings
- Juice of 2 limes
For the Crabs
- 12 live blue crabs (about 4 lbs.)
- 4 (12-oz.) bottles of lager beer
- 2 tsp. kosher salt
- 10 cloves garlic, smashed
- 3 Thai chiles, stemmed and split
- 1 bunch cilantro
- 2 limes, halved
First, make the dipping sauce: Whisk together fish sauce, chiles, and lime juice. Set aside.
Rinse crabs under running water. Pour beer into a 6-quart pot; bring to a boil over high heat. Add salt, garlic, chiles, and cilantro. Squeeze in juice from halved limes; add limes.
Add crabs to pot; cook, covered, until they turn a vibrant reddish-orange, about 8 minutes. Using tongs, transfer crabs to a platter. Serve with sauce. (See How to Eat Blue Crab), for instructions on eating this dish.