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I love crab. I love how sweet and delicate the taste is. What is not sweet and delicate about the crab, is however, the terminology used to grade it–the meat of crabs comes in different grades, depending on which part of the crab’s body it comes from and the overall size of the crab the meat is taken from. Take it away wikipedia:
Mega Jumbo Lump, is the largest whole unbroken pieces available from the blue crab and blue swimming crab.The meat is taken from the two largest muscles connected to the back swimming fins of the crab.
The jumbo lump grade crab meat comes from larger crabs, is the meat from the two large muscles connected to the swimming fins. Contrary to smaller portions of crab meat, it can be used whole. It has a brilliant white color and exquisite taste.
The Lump grade of crab meat is composed of broken pieces of Jumbo Lump, which are not included in the Jumbo Lump grade pack, and other flake pieces. This grade of crab meat is ideal for crab cakes and it is commonly used by manufacturers.
I mean … “Lump”?!? What crab marketers came up with that? Who wants to order and eat “Mega Jumbo Lump”? It sounds like either it’s something that is about to transform into an alien robot, or, will require a course of antibiotics. Either way…not so good.
But, I digress. I went to the store and got a little dungeness crab meat (sorry kids, no time to cook a live one tonight!) and came up with this crostini recipe with a little help from our friend Jamie Oliver, and a few pages on the internet. This was one of the most yummy things I have made for this blog thus far, so I really encourage you to give it a try – and it will only take you 10 min.
1 loaf ciabatta
150 g picked (cooked) crab
1 tbls fresh lemon juice
one pickled asian hot pepper, finely chopped.
4 tbls fennel tops, finely chopped
one clove of garlic
salt and pepper to taste
Optional: gooey cheese or butter
Slice the ciabatta into rounds and toast. While waiting for the bread to toast, put the crab in a small bowl. Toss in the fennel, lemon juice, hot pepper and olive oil. Taste, as adjust seasonings…you want sweet crab, tart from the lemon, a little bit of hot, some fresh fennel. Really, follow your nose — you can’t really go wrong as long as you go easy on the delicate flavour of the crab.
When the bread pops, rub one side of each slice with a clove of fresh garlic. Optionally, spread A LITTLE of the yummy cheese (I tried a goats milk brie called Cabriolet) or butter (my fave) on the bread. Pile on the crab mixture and server with a green salad, or in this case, with a sesame seaweed salad.
This would make a great light lunch or dinner, and would also be a fantastic and easy to make brunch offering.