Soft shell po boys

Serves: 2-4



4 soft shell crabs dressed (eyes, gills, and organs removed)

¼ c flour

2 eggs (whisked)

1 cup panko breadcrumbs (or regular)

1 tbsp olive oil

1 large avocado (cut into quarters sprinkle with lemon)

2 large tomatoes (sliced thinly)

¼ head of iceberg lettuce (shredded)

1 cup mayo

1.5 tsp syracha hot sauce

1 tbsp maple syrup

1 lemon cut in half

1 large loaf of soft Italian bread (sliced in half, remove excess bread from the top half)

Kosher salt and pepper

2 tbsp butter (optional)



1.) Make the sauce, add mayo, hot sauce, juice of .5 lemon and generous pinch of salt, taste and adjust

2.) Set up a breading station with a separate platter for the flour, eggs, and breadcrumbs

3.) Season crabs, flour, crumbs, and eggs with salt and pepper

4.) Dip the crabs in flour, then eggs, and crumbs and set on a plate

5.) Heat large sauté pan to medium high and add oil

6.) When hot add crabs, cooking 4 minutes on each side until golden brown and cooked through (don’t overcrowd pan, do in 2 batches if necessary)

7.) Drain on paper towels if necessary

8.) If you want to serve a lemon butter sauce add the butter to the sauté pan along with a squeeze of lemon and a pinch of salt

9.) Bring to boil, scrape bottom of all bits, and taste for seasoning

10.) To assemble, spread both sides of bread with sauce, tomatoes, lettuce, and avocado

11.) Top with crabs and butter sauce if using.



When I worked at dirks fish I became obsessed with in season soft shell crabs.  I would eat gluttonous amounts for lunch whenever in season. Their simplicity was what drew me to them; the innards produce its own sauce making a case that they’re the perfect food.  I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.  Something about the fine crust and spicy rich sauce makes this one of the best things I’ve tasted, definitely the best soft shell dish.  For the butter sauce you could just squeeze some lemon over the cooked crab in place of it.





                        Step # 6                                                Optional butter sauce