summer sauce: blue crab

In my mind, crab had always been one of the few foods that demanded to be eaten as unadulterated as possible. (A wedge of lemon, a little remoulade on the side, nothing too fancy.) Not so in the Italian world of my brother-in-law, who simmers blue crabs in a simple sauce of ripe tomato, onions, and garlic until the shells are rendered as toothsome as a spring soft-shell. Piled atop a plate of plain spaghetti, it is roll up your sleeves and get messy food: a rapacious, cannibalistic experience infused with all the finger-licking appeal of a woozy summer afternoon. Consider me corrected – at least as far as crab is concerned.

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