Maryland Steamed Crabs
Maryland crabs are generously seasoned with Old Bay seasoning and spices and steamed over, not in, vinegared water. Turn them out onto a newspaper-covered table, preferably outdoors, and dig in. Drawn butter and lemon are fitting accompaniments.
8 cups water
4 cups white distilled vinegar
1 1/3 cups Old Bay seasoning
1/2 cup coarse salt
1/2 cup dry mustard
1/4 cup cracked black pepper
1/4 cup red chile flakes
48 live blue crabs
- In a large pot with a steaming rack, combine water and vinegar.
- In a small bowl, mix together the Old Bay, salt, mustard, pepper, and chile flakes.
- Layer crabs on the rack, sprinkling the spice mixture over each layer. Tightly cover, placing a weight on the lid to deter escapees.
- Boil over high heat until crabs are bright red, about 20 minutes.
- Turn them out onto a newspaper-covered table, preferably outdoors, and dig in. Drawn butter and lemon are fitting accompaniments.
Makes 6 servings.