Now this recipe is a spiced up version of the good old favorite, so be sure to serve a favorite beverage or two to cut the heat.
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— Scott C. Anderson is associate food service director and chef with Shepherd University dining services in Shepherdstown, W.Va.
Soft shell crabs
8 small soft shell crabs, cleaned
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon blackened seasoning
1/4 cup grapeseed oil
2 fresh chili peppers, seeded and sliced
6 scallions, sliced and chopped
Coarse sea salt
1 cup shredded cabbage
1/4 cup shredded jicama
1/4 cup shredded red cabbage
6 ounces sweet chili sauce
Take the crabs and make sure that the face has been cut off and that the gills have been removed, pat dry with paper towel. In a separate bowl, set up the flour and blackened seasoning for dredging.
Dredge the crabs in the flour, lightly coating them.
Heat the oil in a shallow pan until very hot, then gently place crabs into the oil.
You might need to do separate batches depending upon the size of your pan.
Fry 3 minutes per side, until they are a nice golden brown but still soft in the middle.
Remove from oil and place on a paper towel to catch excess oil.
Then place in oven to stay hot.
Add the chili peppers and scallions to the remaining oil and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
Add a touch of salt to taste, and turn off heat and set aside.
Mix the cabbages together and add in the jicama.
Place a small amount on a dinner plate, add on two crabs and sprinkle with sautéed chili pepper mixture.
Drizzle on sweet chili sauce and enjoy.