Blue swimmer crab with salsa pazza

AT A GLANCE

  • Serves 4 people

  • 8 (about 300 gm each) blue swimmer crabs
  • To serve: crusty bread and wild rocket and parmesan salad
  •  
  • Salsa pazza
  • 700 gm mixed small tomatoes, such as Johnny Love Bites, yellow grape and mini Roma
  • 60 ml (¼ cup) extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 white onion, thinly sliced
  • ½ fennel, bulb thinly sliced, fronds reserved
  • 1 carrot, peeled and cut into long matchsticks
  • ½ tsp dried chilli flakes
  • ¼ tsp each fennel and yellow mustard seeds
  • Pinch saffron threads
  • 250 ml (1 cup) dry white wine
  • 1 tsp marjoram leaves
01   To prepare crabs, remove triangular flap underneath crab, lift top shell away from body and discard, and remove gills and yellow ‘mustard’ from crabs and discard. Cook crabs in a large saucepan of boiling salted water for 10 minutes or until bright orange in colour and just cooked through. Drain and set aside.
02   Meanwhile for salsa pazza, score tomatoes and blanch in boiling water for 10-20 seconds or until skin separates from flesh. Remove and, when cool enough to handle, peel and discard skin. Heat oil in a wide heavy-based saucepan and fry garlic, onion, fennel and carrot over medium heat for 5 minutes or until soft. Add spices, fry for 1 minute or until fragrant, add wine, tomatoes and marjoram and season to taste with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cook for another 2-4 minutes or until sauce has reduced by one-third. Add crabs, stir to coat and cook, covered, for 2 minutes or until heated through.
03   To serve, divide crabs among bowls, spoon salsa over, scatter with fennel fronds and serve with crusty bread and wild rocket and parmesan salad to the side.

Recipe:

LISA FEATHERBY

Photography:

BEN DEARNLEY

Styling:

LISA FEATHERBY AND ELODIE RAMBAUD

Drinking Suggestion:

UNWOODED CHARDONNAY. , suggested by MAX ALLEN

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