How do you make a bowl of soup as exciting to look at as it is delicious to eat? You add an incredible garnish! I took a classic Maryland crab soup, loaded with fresh crab meat, vegetables and Old Bay seasoning and topped it with a crispy soft shell crab. The crunchy crab with the slightly spicy tomato broth is a perfect combination.
Sandwiches are one of the most popular applications for crispy fried soft shell crabs. Having gone to college in New Orleans, my favorite is a classic Soft Shell Po’ Boy. A buttermilk batter provides a great texture and the cornmeal with Creole seasoning gives a true Southern flavor. I like mine “fully dressed” and with a heavy dose of Creole Remoulade sauce to add a creamy, slightly spicy, component to the dish.
With Korean fried chicken being one of the top trend items, I thought it would be great to combine those flavors and textures with our small soft shell crabs (mediums) to create a “wow factor” shareable appetizer. A crispy tempura batter made spicy an deep with flavor from fermented Korean chili paste, Gojuchang, and extra crispy with the help of Soju, a Korean liquor. The crabs are served with a quick pickled slaw with the flavors of classic kimchi. You can also serve a dipping sauce along side the crabs, such as Mae Ploy, Thai sweet chili sauce.