Softshell Crab Sandwiches with Rémoulade Slaw

Softshell Crab Sandwiches with Rémoulade Slaw

A tangy cabbage slaw and a drizzle of remoulade accompany these luscious sandwiches.Anna Stockwell

A tangy cabbage slaw and a drizzle of remoulade accompany these luscious sandwiches. Ask your fishmonger to clean the crabs for you, or clean them yourself following these step-by-step instructions.

Softshell Crab Sandwiches with Rémoulade Slaw
A tangy cabbage slaw and a drizzle of rémoulade accompany these luscious sandwiches.
Yield: serves 2

For the Rémoulade

  • 12 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tbsp. Creole mustard
  • 1 tbsp. prepared horseradish
  • 1 tbsp. chopped parsley
  • 2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 14 tsp. sweet paprika
  • 12 shallot, minced
  • Tabasco, to taste
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 14 head red cabbage, cored and shredded

For the Crab Sandwiches

  • 12 cup flour
  • 12 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 14 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 eggs
  • Canola oil, for frying
  • 2 large softshell crabs or 4 small ones, cleaned
  • 2 brioche buns, halved
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 cups watercress

Instructions

  1. Make the rémoulade: Combine the first seven ingredients in a bowl and season with Tabasco, salt, and pepper. Put cabbage into a medium bowl and toss with half the rémoulade, reserving remaining sauce for drizzling over the sandwiches. Cover slaw and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  2. Fry the crabs: In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, and cayenne and season with salt and pepper; set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the milk and eggs; set aside. Add enough oil to a 5-qt. pot to reach a depth of 2". Heat over medium-high heat until a deep-fry thermometer reads 350°. Coat crabs in flour mixture, shaking off excess. Coat crabs in milk mixture, shaking off excess, and then coat them once more in the flour mixture. Fry crabs in oil, turning once, until golden brown, 2-3 minutes. Transfer to paper towels and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Brush cut side of brioche buns with butter. Heat a 12" skillet over medium-high heat and toast buns for 3 minutes. Transfer buns to 2 plates and top the bottom buns with the slaw and fried crabs. Top crabs with watercress and a spoonful of the reserved rémoulade.