You will need:
1 large pot with lid (stainless steel, graniteware etc.
- not aluminum)
An elevated platform (rack or similar device)
a minimum 2" high placed in the
bottom of the pot so the crabs will be raised above the liquid in the pot.
JO #2 crab seasoning or similar seafood seasoning
Vinegar (preferably apple cider vinegar)
Flat beer (optional)
Depending upon the size of your pot, for each dozen crabs put 1 cup of water
and 1 cup of vinegar into the pot**. If you like you can add a
can or 2 of flat beer.
**This is an approximate amount of liquid; adjust the liquid amount so
it is a little below the rack level. Make sure you have
sufficient liquid so that it does not boil away before the crabs are
done. The crabs should never be immersed in the water.
Place pot on the stove or outdoor
gas burner/cooker (not a grill) and turn burner on high. Bring
the liquid to a boil.
Using tongs, place the crabs on the
elevated platform in the pot, sprinkling the JO #2 crab seasoning (or
similar Maryland seasoning) generously over each layer of crabs.
Cover and wait for wisps of steam to
begin escaping from under the lid, about 5-10 minutes or so.
Continue to steam over high heat for an additional 20-30 minutes until
crabs turn bright orange/red. Note: If crabs have dark red
or greenish patches, then the crabs are not yet fully cooked.
Remove crabs from the pot and place
on a paper covered table. Enjoy!
Steam live crabs only! Never
attempt to steam or cook a dead crab.
Crabs will be easier to handle (less
lively) if you immerse them in ice water for 3 minutes or refrigerate
them for an hour or so.
Never use the same utensils for
handling live crabs and cooked crabs since bacterial
cross-contamination can occur.
Flat beer imparts a better flavor
than fresh beer. To flatten beer quickly, pour beer into a bowl
and leave out at room temperature for an hour or so.
Leftover steamed crabs can be stored
in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. Do not freeze steamed crabs.
Pick leftover crabs and use the meat
to make crab cakes or other crab dishes. Once made into crab
cakes you can freeze them for later use.
to find crab seasonings and steaming accessories
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